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G-III Apparel emerges as bidder for Arcadia

Lauretta Roberts
11 January 2021

G-III Apparel, the US fashion group and license holder of brands such as DKNY and Calvin Klein, has emerged as a potential bidder for Sir Philip Green's collapsed retail empire Arcadia.

Led by chairman Morris Goldfarb, the group is one of two US businesses interested in Arcadia with Authentic Brands Group, parent of Juicy Couture and Barneys, also in the running, according to The Telegraph.

The US groups are up against the UK's fast fashion giant Boohoo, which is said to be particularly interested in Topshop. If it secured the deal it would likely mean the end of Topshop's stores as Boohoo's modus operandi has been to take distressed high street brands, such as Karen Millen, Coast, Oasis and Warehouse, and turn then into online only entities.

Another bidder is said to be high street giant Next, in partnership with US investor Davidson Kempner. The Next deal is believed to centre around the two parties running Topshop as a joint venture and Next taking on the remaining brands.

Mike Ashley's Frasers Group had publicly stated its interest in acquiring some of Arcadia's brands, which includes Miss Selfridge, Wallis, Burton and Dorothy Perkins but it is not clear if it plans to table a bid.

Before Christmas plus size brand Evans was sold to Australia's City Chic Collective in a £23m deal that including the brand and its e-commerce operations, but not its physical retail stores.

Arcadia administrator Deloitte is previously reported to have placed an 18 January deadline on bids for the remainder of the brands and is keen to secure deals as soon as possible with all physical retail stores under lockdown until at least early March.

The timing of the lockdown means Topshop's flagship store on Oxford Street is unlikely to re-open in its current form again. The site is being marketed separately from the Topshop brand by agents Savills and Eastdil and, despite the pandemic, is likely to attract a great deal of interest given that it is one of London's prime retail sites.

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