SCP Merchandising, an Illinois-based merch company used by artists including Mitski, Father John Misty and Carly Rae Jepsen, has shut down, according to a member of SCP leadership still on-site after the company laid off its staff over the weekend.
Based on accounts from multiple former SCP employees on LinkedIn, the company’s employees were abruptly laid off on Sunday evening (Dec. 17). The source tells Billboard that the company will most likely file for bankruptcy and that there is no process yet for clients to retrieve their merchandise, but that those with outstanding balances will not be able to do so until they pay those off with SCP or a potential bankruptcy trustee. They add that priority will be given to clients who have no balance due as well as those who are arranging for payment of unpaid bills.
The source notes that the company plans to send out an email Tuesday (Dec. 19) to clients who do not owe money to figure out pickup or shipping arrangements for their inventory; clients with outstanding balances must first make a payment and then reach out to SCP once that’s been done in order to coordinate receiving their stock. The source says those who still owe “should know that they are in debt to SCP” as the company has been sending past-due statements.
The source adds that after Thursday (Dec. 21), retrieving inventory may be slower for clients as SCP only has bank approval for payroll through that day, “and even so we don’t have enough for the entire job.” They continue: “After that, a court-approved trustee will replace company employees and that’s only one person and I’m not sure what their take on inventory will be. There’s a few different paths it could go. It’s just all very speculative.”
Meanwhile, artists’ online stores that ran through SCP have been taken down entirely, including Mitski, Father John Misty, Alec Benjamin, Dashboard Confessional, Louis the Child and Chappell Roan. One source in artist management says they haven’t heard from anyone at SCP yet and are trying to figure out how to collect their remaining merchandise. According to that source, they initially began working with SCP because the rates were significantly cheaper than their competitors: The company took 15% of net sales compared to around 20% of gross that, the source says, many others take.
Launched in 2013 by owner Stephen Hopkins, SCP bills itself on its website as a “full-service creative collaborator” for artists and brands. Other current and former artist clients include Billie Eilish, Freddie Gibbs, Tanya Tucker, Manchester Ochestra and Wiz Khalifa; the record label Loma Vista Recordings; and the festival Bittersweet Daze.
According to Hopkins’ LinkedIn profile, he also serves as co-founder/CEO of Web3 company Dropolis and co-founded 3E Love, a company that makes clothing for people with disabilities.
Additional reporting by Colin Stutz.
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