Thai retailer says it’s received no communication about Selfridges investment

Thai retailer says it’s received no communication about Selfridges investment

By

Bloomberg

Published



Jan 8, 2024

Central Retail Corp., one of Thailand’s biggest retailers, said that it has not received any communication about investing in the iconic Selfridges department store, which is majority owned by its parent company.

Selfridges

Responding to recent news about Selfridges’ cash crunch, the statement clarified that the company was not in discussions with its parent, Central Group, about any investment opportunity in the UK brand.

The company will assess any new investment based on whether it aligns with its strategic business plan, is appropriately priced and has optimal timing, it said in a statement to the Thai stock exchange on Friday. Central Pattana Pcl, another unit of Central Group, said separately any opportunity it considers must be in line with its strategy and it also hasn’t been in communication with its parent regarding Selfridges.

The statements follow a New-Year sellioff in shares of both firms, sparked by concerns they risk being caught up in any worsening of Selfridges’ financial risk. Accounts filed last week show the company that owns the store, Cambridge Properties Holding Ltd., is in discussions with Central Group for future financing to pay upcoming debt after Signa Prime Selection AG — Cambridge’s co-owner — applied for insolvency.

Central Group bought Selfridges with Rene Benko’s Signa in 2022, and together they co-own the property as well as the operating business. Interest payments on the property company’s £2.2 billion ($2.8 billion) of debt have soared since then, leaving it dependent on support from its owners.

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