Harris Scarfe has been placed into receivership with Vaughan Strawbridge, Kathryn Evans and Tim Norman of Deloitte Restructuring Services appointed voluntary administrators on Wednesday.

Operating nationally, but best known in Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania, Harris Scarfe retails bed linen, kitchenware, homewares, electrical appliances, and apparel across 66 stores. The business employs over 1,800 staff, and has annual sales totalling $380 million.

Strawbridge said trading will continue as normal over the Christmas period and employees will continue to be paid by the receivers. He is confident there is more than sufficient assets to meet all employees’ entitlements. The receivers intend to achieve a sale of the business as a going concern and preserve the employment of as many people as possible.

“Harris Scarfe is a longstanding retail institution. We will be making every effort to secure a future for the business and intend to commence an immediate sale of business process,” he said.

Gift cards and lay-by deposits will be honoured in full by the receivers.

Last month, Harris Scarfe parent company, Greenlit Brands, sold its general merchandise division (comprising Harris Scarfe, as well as Best & Less, Debenhams Australia and Postie New Zealand) to private equity firm, Allegro Funds.