Qataris eye House of Fraser

Tuesday, 07 May 2013

House of Fraser could soon find itself under the same ownership as Harrods, as it is reportedly being bid for by the Qataris.

House of Fraser's portfolio includes 63 stores and could see the Qataris purchase the British group for 300 million pounds that would reunite the UK department store chain with Harrods.

A successful bid would reunite the House of Fraser name with Harrods after a separation of 28 years. House of Fraser was bought it in 1959, but the two were split when the Al Fayed family acquired the store in Knightsbridge, Central London, for 615 million pounds in 1985.

Any deal with the Qataris will be difficult to complete as House of Fraser has a wide shareholder base and a large amount of debt. The company was taken private in 2006 for 351 million pounds by a consortium of investors led by Baugur, but the Icelandic retail group collapsed during the country's financial crisis of 2009.

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