Cloth­ing boss in hug­ging furore

Sunday Mail - - NEWS THE BEST SPOTS TO EAT WHILE THE SUN’S SHINING -

THE founder and chief ex­ec­u­tive of the Ted Baker fash­ion em­pire, Ray Kelvin, is to take a tem­po­rary leave of ab­sence af­ter al­le­ga­tions of ha­rass­ment were made against him.

The Bri­tish lux­ury cloth­ing com­pany said a com­mit­tee of di­rec­tors set up to look into the claims had been made aware of “fur­ther se­ri­ous al­le­ga­tions” re­gard­ing Mr Kelvin. Ted Baker said Mr Kelvin had agreed to go on leave “for the ben­e­fit of the busi­ness and the peo­ple who work in it”.

Claims that Mr Kelvin en­forced a “hug­ging” cul­ture at the com­pany emerged over the week­end, af­ter a pe­ti­tion was launched call­ing for an end to “ha­rass­ment”.

Ac­cu­sa­tions were also made that he mas­saged em­ploy­ees, kissed their ears and asked some to sit on his lap. Mr Kelvin said, in a state­ment, that the claims had “raised some se­ri­ous and up­set­ting is­sues”.

“Ted Baker has been my life and soul for 30 years,” he said.

“I love this com­pany and I care deeply for all my col­leagues. It’s for that rea­son that I’ve de­cided to take a tem­po­rary leave of ab­sence.’’

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