Critics slam ‘shocked and appalled’ boohoo billionaire as he pleads ignorance to sweatshop factory conditions
The billionaire founder of Boohoo faced a backlash after he claimed to be ‘shocked and appalled’ by the sweatshop conditions in his Leicester supplier factories.
MPs said Mahmud Kamani must have known there was illegally low pay in his supply chain because he had been working in the city’s rag trade for 25 years.
The comments came after an independent report by Alison Levitt QC revealed ‘excessive’ hours, life-threatening conditions and illegally low pay across Boohoo’s supply chain.
MPs said Boohoo owner Mahmud Kamani must have known there was illegally low pay in his supply chain because he had been working in the city’s rag trade for 25 years
Philip Dunne MP, chairman of the House of Commons environmental audit committee, said reports from 2010 had revealed the exploitation in Leicester.
Kamani insisted he had been Our business has been growing 50-100 per cent per year, and processes do fall away. What we are guilty of, if anything, is we didn’t put processes in fast enough.
But Dunne said: ‘It seems extraordinary the board can ‘shocked and appalled’ by the allegations, adding: ‘We’re not making things up.’
He told MPs: ‘In the last 14 years we’ve got more right than wrong. I’m determined to fix things that have gone wrong. say they are shocked and appalled by what emerged.
‘It has been common practice and common knowledge that many Leicester factories have not been cohering to UK labour law.’
Last night Boohoo shares closed at 301.9p, valuing the business at 3.8billion.
The Levitt report revealed that Boohoo knew how bad the situation was last December but Kamani dismissed concerns at the time.