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Frasers Group is reportedly close to securing a deal to take over Ted Baker‘s British operations, weeks after it was entered into administration.

The retail giant, which is seemingly snapping up the majority of failed retail businesses on the UK highstreet, first showed interest in Ted Baker early last month. Since then, it has been reported that the group is the preferred partner for the collapsed retail chain, according to Sky News.

Retail industry sources said that a deal may be agreement in the coming days. If completed, it will add Ted Baker to Fraser’s growing portfolio which already includes Flannels, Jack Wills and Sports Direct.

Next and OSL, Ted Baker’s US licensing partner, were also reported to be battling it out to acquire the collapsed retailer with administrators Teneo.

Authentic Brands Group, which owns Ted Baker’s parent company, will work closely with Frasers if it is confirmed as the brand’s new British partner.

Ted Baker first faced trials and tribulations back in 2019 when its founder Ray Kelvin stepped down after accusations about his treatment of female employees. Authentic Brands Group (ABG) acquired Ted Baker for £211 million in August 2022 leading to its delisting from the London Stock Exchange. Following its usual mode of managing brands, ABG then set about outsourcing key aspects of the business. Little-known Dutch company AARC was appointed to run the UK and Europe retail and e-commerce business but quickly ran into financial difficulty.

ABG was obliged to step in and offer financial support but it says AARC failed to provide further promised funding for the Ted Baker retail business and it was obliged to pull the plug on the partnership in February. It subsequently appointed Teneo to stabilise the business while it sought another retail partner.

Benji Dymant and Daniel Smith of Teneo Financial Advisory Limited have been managing the administration.

At the time of Teneo’s appointment, John McNamara, ABG’s Chief Strategy and Transition officer, said: “Despite our tireless efforts, the damage done during a period under AARC in which NODL built up a significant level of arrears was too much to overcome.

“We remain focused on securing a new partner to uphold and grow the Ted Baker brand in the UK and Europe where it began.”

To learn more, read TheIndustry.fashion’s feature ‘In History: Ted Baker. A timeline of a British retail icon’ here.



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