Mike Ashley’s Frasers Group Faults Debenhams Bid Process: Times

Details provided by a restructuring firm to Mike Ashley’s Frasers Group about the embattled retailer Debenhams is “woefully inadequate,” attorneys representing the prospective buyer said, according to the Sunday Times. Frasers, in a letter to investment bank Lazard, said there had been a “deliberate attempt to exclude us from the process.”

Debenhams, which employs about 12,000 people, has been struggling with the shift in U.K. retail habits for years, well before the coronavirus pandemic forced shops to close. Last year creditors took control of the chain and in April it entered administration to protect the company from the threat of legal action while its 142 U.K. stores were closed.

In June and July, the company reopened almost 90% of its stores and administrators started seeking a sale to a third party or joint venture.

Debenhams told the Times it was conducting a “fair and thorough process.” Lazard declined to comment to the Times. Freshfields, a law firm also involved in the process, didn’t respond to a request for comment from the Times.

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