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Frasers reportedly eyeing Matches acquisition

By Rachel Douglass


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Matches in London Credits: Shaun James Cox / Matches

Mike Ashley’s retail giant Frasers Group is believed to be mulling a potential purchase of the struggling luxury e-tailer, Matches – formerly Matchesfashion.

The conglomerate is reportedly in “detailed negotiations” on a deal that could see it take over Matches “within days”, according to city sources for Sky News.

The media outlet said that any agreement made by Frasers could result in “heavy losses” for Apax Partners, Matches’ long-term private equity backer, with the group understood to be looking at a 50 million pound solvent deal.

Frasers is one of the few parties who had submitted offers for a buyout last week, with Next being another eyeing an acquisition.

Speculation surrounding Matches’ financial position has been circulating throughout the year, after it was revealed that Apax had injected 60 million pounds into the company in January, to cover both equity and debt.

Later, in December, a report by Drapers stated that Matches was reportedly seeking a 50 million pound equity raise amid an ongoing turnaround strategy, with all options said to be on the table.

In November, Matches had reported widening losses during the year to January 31, with operating losses up from 37.5 million pounds to 67.2 million pounds. In addition to this, revenue also fell 1.7 percent for the period to 380 million pounds.

Frasers Group