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M&S and Next looking to takeover Victoria’s Secret UK assets: Sky News
Posted on Friday, 26 June 2020 14:50
Marks & Spencer (M&S) and Next are in the running to snap up Victoria’s Secret’s UK-based operations, which have fallen into administration, Sky News reported.

The possible sale, which remains in its early stages, could launch a bidding competition between two of the country’s largest retail chains, the broadcaster noted.

Sky News observed that another unnamed suitor is also interested in making a deal with Deloitte, which was named as the lingerie brand’s administrator earlier this month.

The news follows the easing of lockdown measures in the UK, which saw Victoria’s Secret close around a third of its stores throughout the country between March and June.

Its shops are due to reopen today and the group is said to have made revised rent deals with their landlords.

Earlier this month, Victoria’s Secret’s UK arm announced it was opting for a light touch administration filing, which would enable its existing management to remain in control of the group while providing protection from creditors.

Another option for the company would be to franchise its operations.

Citing analysts, Sky news noted any potential bidder that wanted to franchise the Victoria’s Secret brand would have to seek out restructured rental terms for any outgoing outlets.

In its full-year results for the financial year ended 28th March 2020, M&S outlined plans to open up its digital platform and biggest stores to guest brands in order to broaden its appeal and increase its online growth.

However, analysts observed that Next may be a better candidate to franchise the lingerie group, as it sells third-party products from the likes of Abercrombie & Fitch, Boss and Under Armour, Sky News reported.

During the quarter ended 2nd May 2020, Victoria’s Secret posted sales of USD 821.50 million, down 45.3 per cent from USD 1.50 billion in the corresponding period of 2019.

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