Mike Ashley’s Frasers is positioning to swoop for Gieves & Hawkes
Frasers Group is reportedly in late stage talks to seal a deal for Gieves & Hawkes, a beleaguered tailor which previously dressed Sir Winston Churchill and Queen Elizabeth II.
Mike Ashley’s empire is swooping in for the Savile Row retailer after its Hong Kong-based owner fell into administration, Sky News first reported.
The popularity of working from home has weighed heavily on tailors in recent years.
It is not the first ailing retailer Frasers will have snapped up this year.
In June, Frasers – no longer run by Ashley – bought online fashion retailer Missguided for £20m.
The group had also mulled bringing ill homewares retailer Made.com under its wing just weeks ago.
In October, Frasers built up its stake in Asos during a share price tumble, taking its slice of the online outlet to five per cent.
The value of the deal was unclear on Sunday evening but will not be material in the context of Frasers' size.
Frasers, where Mr Ashley remains the majority shareholder but is no longer a director, has been contemplating an acquisition of Gieves & Hawkes since September.
Formed in its current guise in 1974, the respective histories of the Gieves and Hawkes tailoring labels date back to 1785 and 1771 respectively.
Savile Row, which for centuries has been synonymous with high-quality men's formalwear, has endured a tough period, with the pandemic's impact on working habits impacting demand for bespoke suits.
Gieves & Hawkes has held royal warrants for the late Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, as well as King Charles III and the Duke of Edinburgh.