Private equity is sniffing around the owner of Katies

Image: Wendell Teodoro/WireImage
  • Specialty Fashion Group is getting offers from private equity.
  • Among the deals offered is $100 million cash from Anchorage Capital Partners for City Chic and Autograph.
  • But that deal has a number off issues and is unlikely to be approved.

Private equity has been kicking the tyres of retailer Specialty Fashion Group, the owner of Millers, Katies, Crossroads, Autograph, City Chic and Rivers.

The bricks and mortar fashion retailer is in the middle of a structural review, restructuring to position itself in a world of increasing digital sales.

“In the course of that review, the group has received a number of confidential, non-binding indicative proposals for a change of control of the group or the acquisition of certain brands,” the company says.

Anchorage Capital Partners has made a $100 million cash offer for City Chic and Autograph.

The offer runs out tomorrow and Specialty Fashion Group doesn’t believe an agreement will be reached.

“There are a range of outstanding issues that are yet to be agreed with Anchorage and the offer is subject to a number of conditions,” the company says.

A short time ago, Specialty Fashion Group shares were down 2.5% to $0.39.

The company says it will consider all options including divestment of brands, whole of company and a potential capital raising.

Specialty Fashion Group says it has made good progress in a competitive retail environment.

The company’s objective is to transform the business into an agile omnichannel retailer with a strong and visible presence online and on the high street.

The retailer has been closing unprofitable stores.

In February, the company posted underlying earnings for the half year of
$18.5 million, ahead of the forecast range of $14 million to $17 million, due to better than expected Christmas trading.

Other retails have reported weak holiday trading and increased competition from digital players.

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