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House of Fraser calls in administrators with eye on post-administration deal

By James Wallace - Friday, August 10, 2018 7:23

House of Fraser (HoF) is seeking a court hearing this morning to appoint administrators from EY over the struggling retailer’s various operating companies, after a solvent solution with interested parties did not materialise following escalated late-night talks.

In a statement this morning, HoF stated: “House of Fraser announces that its discussions with interested investors and its main secured creditors have not concluded in a solvent solution.

“Significant progress has been made towards completing a sale of the Group’s business and assets. The proposed administrators are expected to continue to progress those discussions with a view to concluding a transaction shortly after their appointment.”

The statement implies a deal related to salvaging the business following administration remains on the table, which was the preferred option of Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct, which owns 11% of the HoF. The possibility of a pre-pack administration is now increasing.

Retail tycoon Philip Day, founder of Edinburgh Woollen Mill Group, and the Apollo-backed Alteri Investors were also in talks to acquire the 170-year old retailer.

Administrators from Ernst & Young are expected to be appointed after court hearings at 7:30am UK time this morning over the various HoF operating companies.

The statement added: “The proposed administrators have confirmed that the business will continue trading, including all stores and offices, while they seek to complete a sale. All stores will be open for business as usual today.”

This is a developing story, more to follow.

James Wallace is a freelance consultant and can be reached via Linkedin or email: jawallace32@gmail.com

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