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Central Group reportedly eyeing takeover of Signa retail brands

By Rachel Douglass


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Jacquemus Le Bleu at Selfridges. Credits: Picture Courtesy of Random Studio

Thailand’s Central Group is believed to be mulling a possible takeover of some of the real estate assets owned by the recently collapsed Signa Holding.

This could include KaDeWe in Germany and London-based Selfridges, the latter of which Central already holds a significant stake in.

According to a report by Business Insider, Central is believed to be in discussions with Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) regarding Selfridges, weeks after speculation surrounding the PIF’s interest in the retailer began circulating.

The report added that Central is looking to up its stake in the British department store to 60 percent, while further taking control of its operating business.

Such a decision would be based on the firm’s strategic business plan, whether the retailer has been priced appropriately and if the timing is right.

The news comes on the back of the financial collapse of Signa, one of two companies that had purchased Selfridges in a joint venture mid-2022.

One year on, however, the Austrian firm was ultimately forced to file for administration after it racked up significant debt, leaving co-owner Central Group to gain control of Selfridges, exercising “its right to convert a loan provided by one of its subsidiaries”.

As Signa continues to face insolvency, the Telegraph had previously reported that the firm’s shares in Selfridges are now up for sale and Central is seeking a new partner, yet sources noted that legal proceedings in Austria make the process complex.

Interested parties are said to be waiting for a closure on the situation surrounding Signa, which still owns 50 percent of the retailer’s brand and real estate, before registering their official interest.

Central Group