Apr 10, 2019

What happens to Debenhams now?

Mike Ashley has made clear his interest in buying the store chain all along, despite being repeatedly rebuffed by Debenhams' board. "Philip Day is developing a department store concept, so he might want to take some of their stores," says Ms Hinton. It's a tall order expecting anyone to take on a chain the size of Debenhams at a time when bricks and mortar retail is struggling. Ms Wehrle says any purchaser would be looking at slimming down the "Huge number of stores" in the chain. GlobalData's Maureen Hinton agrees that even Mike Ashley would thin store numbers, and argues Debenhams would need significant investment if it wants to compete with John Lewis.

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