Wrapit, the upmarket wedding list service, is on the brink of going bust, potentially leaving thousands of newly-weds without their gifts. The online retailer has run into problems borrowing more money to stay afloat. If a rescuer is not found by next week, it will be forced to call in administrators from KPMG. It blames its situation on the credit crunch, which it says made couples more frugal about their wedding lists and made it harder to get funding.
Couples who have had delivery of gifts delayed have flooded wedding forums with complaints. Some claimed to have waited for six months after closing their lists with the company without receiving all their gifts.
Craig Hinchley, 29, an IT consultant, and his wife, Amy, 27, recently received £150 compensation from Wrapit after waiting more than six months for their gifts to arrive. “It’s been a bit of a nightmare,” he said. Oliver Williamson, 37, a bar owner whose gifts were missing for eight months, said: “They are possibly the most dreadful company we have ever dealt with.”
Danielle Tilley, head of customer fulfilment at Wrapit, told one customer she had “quite literally hundreds of couples to work with during very difficult times”. Wrapit, which at one stage had an annual turnover of £6.3 million, has been trying to refinance since September, but three separate investors have pulled out at the last minute.
Set up by the former fashion journalist Pepita Diamand in 2000 with £2.5 million, the company collected money from wedding guests, then ordered gifts when the couple closed the list after their weddings. Clients were supposed to get their gifts within eight to twelve weeks of closing their lists.
On Tuesday, the Mayfair department store General Trading Company went into administration. A spokesman for the shop where the Prince of Wales and Lady Diana Spencer had their wedding list said that it had suffered from the decline of confidence in the retail market.