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Two Signa subsidiaries file for insolvency, Selfridges seeks financing

By Rachel Douglass


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Stella McCartney's Stellabration at Selfridges, The Corner Shop. Credits: Selfridges.

Two key subsidiaries of the already insolvent Signa Group have filed for bankruptcy in what is the latest development in the downfall of the international retail empire.

Both Signa Development Selection and Signa Prime Selection filed for insolvency last week, with the latter – a stakeholder in Selfridges and KaDeWe – believed to have already submitted a restructuring plan to a Vienna court, according to a statement from the group seen by WWD.

The news comes just one month on from Signa Group’s own administration filing, made towards the end of November, a move made after it was unable to secure liquidity to carry out an out-of-court restructuring process.

The retail conglomerate cited “severe economic pressure” as the primary cause of its financial turmoil, with the application coming “despite considerable efforts”.

In light of Signa’s downfall, it appears that Selfridges, once jointly owned by Signa, is now also attempting to dig its way out of what was left behind.

According to account filings by Selfridges’ holding company Cambridge Properties, the department store is said to be in talks with its other co-owner Central Group to secure funds in a bid to meet upcoming debt payments.

Central, which acquired Selfridges alongside Signa last year, took full control of the luxury retailer early November in what the firm said at the time “solidifies” its place as both the owner and operator of the chain.

Now, the Thai multinational is understood to be in “ongoing discussions” in regards to the structure and form of financing, with the relation of financial support currently uncertain.

In a statement to Bloomberg, a spokesperson for Selfridges said: “This does not change anything for Selfridges. Selfridges trades independently from its shareholders. We are delighted to have the ongoing and unwavering support of Central Group.”

Central Group
Signa Holding