First Arcadia brand sold as suitors line up for rest of the collapsed fashion empire

Australian-listed clothes retailer City Chic is to pay £23m for Arcadia's plus-sized fashion brand Evans.
Ryan McAleer

THE first fashion brand from the collapsed Arcadia clothing empire has been bought out of administration.

Plus-sized clothing brand Evans has been acquired by Australian outfit City Chic in a £23 million deal. But it will result in Evans becoming an online-only brand, with more than 100 Evans concessions and outlets closing.

It’s thought the concessions and outlets will be able to continue until March to sell off remaining stock, but many jobs are at risk.

Co Tyrone fashion and homewares group Menary’s has already announced the closure of three Tempest concession stores in Omagh, Cookstown and the Rushmere shopping centre. The stores, based on the concession model, had been dominated by Arcadia brands.

Meanwhile a queue of suitors, including Mike Ashley's Frasers Group, are understood to be in line to pick up the rest of Philip Green’s collapsed retail group, including Topshop, Dorothy Perkins, Burton and Miss Selfridge.

Boohoo, Next and Authentic Brands, the owner of the US department store Barneys, are thought to be lining up offers of £200m for Topshop.

Arcadia’s administrators at Deloitte said on Monday that the process to secure new owners for the other Arcadia Group brands remains ongoing.

"There have been significant expressions of interest for all brands.

"The joint administrators expect to provide a further update in the new year."

Frasers aspirations took a dent on Monday when the retail group issued a profit warning.

The Sports Direct owner said the new Tier 4 lockdown rules for the south of England, introduced during its key Christmas trading period, mean it can no longer commit to hitting expected boosts in profits of between 20 per cent and 30 per cent outlined earlier this month.

"From Sunday 20 December 2020, the Government closed non-essential retail in London, the South East, and East of England with no warning,” it said in a statement.

“This has led to virtually all of our stores closing in these areas."

The Frasers Group has already moved to acquire Debenhams’ store at Foyleside in Derry, a move which is set to secure around 200 jobs.

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