// Next and M&S eye up Victoria’s Secret UK division
// Victoria’s Secret appointed administrators for its UK business on June 5, placing 800 jobs & 25 stores at risk
// The retailer shut down 250 stores across the US in late May – this equated to 1/4 of its store estate
Next and Marks & Spencer have reportedly expressed interest in taking on the UK operations of Victoria’s Secret, which fell into administration earlier this month.
According to Sky News, the two retail giants are among at least three parties looking at becoming the new franchise partner for Victoria’s Secret in the UK, and will negotiate with administrators from Deloitte.
The US lingerie retailer’s parent company L Brands placed its UK arm into administration on June 5, putting over 800 jobs and 25 stores at risk.
- Victoria’s Secret: What went wrong?
- Over 800 jobs at risk as Victoria’s Secret UK falls into administration
- Victoria’s Secret UK stores at risk as it shutters 250 US stores
It drafted in Deloitte advisers to assess the impact of Covid-19 on business and the firm said it would conduct a “light touch” administration as it sought a potential buyer.
The administration came after Victoria’s Secret announced it would permanently close 250 stores in North America over the next few months, equating to about one quarter of its store estate in that market.
Victoria’s Secret exited the UK retail lockdown with the reopening of around a third of its stores across the country on Friday.
M&S’ interest in the lingerie retailer comes after it said it would begin working with third-party brands in its most recent full-year trading update.
M&S is also already a leading seller of underwear and intimate clothing in the UK, currently holding a 27 per cent share of the lingerie market and 36 per cent of the market for bras.
Meanwhile Next is looking to expand its wider business by linking up with brands in multiple categories, while also opening standalones in expanding categories, such as beauty.