Published: Sat, August 11, 2018
Sports | By Juana Wells

House of Fraser bought by Sports Direct

House of Fraser bought by Sports Direct

If there is a more hopeless business to be in than department stores, it is hard to think of it.

In the same breath, he said: "My ambition is to transform House of Fraser into the Harrods of the high street".

"Court hearings are expected to take place at 7.30 am today, at which orders will be sought appointing individuals from Ernst & Young LLP as administrators of each of the operating companies with immediate effect".

Department store chain House of Fraser has today been bought by retail company Sports Direct for £90 million after it had fallen into administration.

It said it had put questions to House of Fraser earlier this week in relation to its future but has not yet received a response.

A spokesperson for House of Fraser said this was "only a temporary situation and will be resolved".

The CVA could yet be implemented, but some reports have suggested that some HoF locations could be converted into Sports Direct stores.

Scott Lennon, Unite regional officer with responsibility for Sports Direct, said: "Sports Direct is a leopard that has not changed its spots and we hope that its poor record on pay and employment practices are not transferred to the House of Fraser".

Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley has always been rumoured to have been interested in buying the department store giant - as well as Philip Day, chief executive of Edinburgh Woollen Mill.

"Significant progress has been made towards completing a sale of the group's business and assets".

This morning's announcement confirms that Sports Direct has acquired all of the United Kingdom stores of House of Fraser, the House of Fraser brand and all of the stock in the business.

House of Fraser assured that its offices and stores will continue trading as normal while they look to reach a deal.

At that time chief executive Alex Williamson said: "We are hopeful that the current negotiations will shortly be concluded".

With all 59 stores and 17,000 jobs saved at House of Fraser, a period of transition will now begin for the 170-year-old retailer.

House of Fraser was plunged into crisis last week after C.banner, the Chinese owner of Hamleys, pulled its investment in the troubled retail chain.

The company's chairman Frank Slevin added: "This has been an extraordinarily challenging six months in which the business has delivered so many critical elements of the turnaround plan".

Mr Ashley was one of at least four parties squaring off to rescue House of Fraser after China's C.banner International Holdings Ltd shelved plans to buy a majority stake.

Like this: