Thailand's Central denies Selfridges buy after news that it won £4bn race for firm
Thailand’s Central Group has reportedly denied it’s in talks to buy Selfridges after it was widely reported globally that the firm will buy the business perhaps as soon as this month.
In a statement to the country’s stock exchange, CEO Yol Phokasub said it was offering requested clarification “regarding news stories by The Times and Brand Inside on 2 December 2021 reporting that Central Group is preparing to purchase Selfridges; the company would like to clarify that the company is not currently involved with the transaction reported in the news”.
That doesn't, of course, mean that the group won't be the eventual buyer of the business.
The owner of Italy’s La Rinascente had reportedly won the race to buy Selfridges with terms believed to have been agreed for the deal that could be worth around £4 billion.
The Times reported on Thursday that it had learnt Thailand’s Central Group would buy the business from the Weston family as soon as this month. Selfridges hasn’t commented.
The business has 25 locations and owns Selfridges in the UK, as well as Brown Thomas and Arnotts in Dublin, De Bijenkorf in the Netherlands and Holt Renfrew in Canada. The Westons have owned it for most of this century and it’s unknown whether the entire International business would be sold.
Central is an even bigger business, operating 3,700 shops globally.
Its line-up includes la Rinascente that’s run by ex-Selfridges CEO Vittoria Radice.
Selfridges was put up for sale this year after reports of an unsolicited approach from a still-unnamed buyer.
Other potential buyers reportedly interested include Hong Kong-based Lane Crawford and Harrods owner the Qatar Investment Authority.
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