Page last updated at 13:59 GMT, Friday, 25 July 2008 14:59 UK

Fears for wedding gift list firm

Woman in wedding dress
Brides and grooms are worried they might not receive their wedding gifts

Wedding present firm Wrapit says it is experiencing financial difficulties and is in talks with banks and advisers.

The company said that it was not in administration and is working to find a solution. It added:"We won't know the outcome until the end of next week."

Meanwhile, brides and grooms are worried they will not receive the gifts bought for them and that their guests will lose their money.

Customers can still reserve gifts but Wrapit is not taking payments.

"You can reserve a gift but the payments are on hold. We are not taking anyone's money," a spokeswoman told the BBC.

In an earlier message, Wrapit said HSBC was withholding £1m of its money.

This is "money which would otherwise have been devoted to fulfilling our orders," it said.

This is a total nightmare

It added: "We are working with our advisers, KPMG, to resolve this situation over the next few days and will make further announcements in due course. In the meantime, our showrooms will open by appointment only until further notice."

It said there was a "realistic chance" that they would be able to complete their wedding list orders.

Couples who did not want to make any further purchases should alter the welcome message on their Wrapit homepage, it said.

Warehouse items that have been allocated to customers will be delivered but there will be a delay, it added.

Guests that have paid by credit card, Amex or Visa debit card will be able to claim a full refund, the company asserted.

Apacs, the UK's payments association, said that customers who had paid over £100 on a credit card were covered.

Those who had used a debit card or spent less than £100 on a credit card were not automatically covered, Apacs said, but some card issuers would look at their claims on a case by case basis.

'Tremendously concerned'

Guests at the wedding of Alex Black and his wife had ordered £2,000 worth of gifts from Wrapit.

However, since the wedding on 5 April Mr Black says he has only received around £400 worth of presents.

I wish we had never gone near the business
Natalie, Wrapit customer

"We closed our list on the 19 April and we were promised that within eight to 12 weeks our entire gift list would actually be fulfilled," he told the BBC.

"We're tremendously concerned because the insurance possibly won't cover this."

The company handles around 2,500 to 3,500 wedding lists a year.

It helps couples to compile their lists and allows their guests to buy the items online through their website.

Wrapit then purchases the items and delivers them to the happy couple.

One bride-to-be, Natalie from London, contacted the BBC News website to say she is "very concerned" about Wrapit's financial difficulties.

"I wish we had never gone near the business. I am so upset. I am due to sit my medical school exams in less than a week and this is one worry I really wish I didn't have."

Wrapit customer Heather Galloway Parmar, also from London, said she got married in October 2007 but had yet to receive any gifts ordered through the company.

"We closed the registry in February 2008 and have been peddled excuse after excuse about why not a single gift has been delivered to date," she said.



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SEE ALSO
Worries for wedding gifts website
25 Jul 08 |  Business
Tied up in knots on a wedding day
11 Jun 08 |  Business

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