Mike Ashley’s Frasers Group buys Missguided from administration

Mike Ashley’s retail empire has bought struggling fast fashion brand Missguided in a bailout deal.

The deal comes after Missguided collapsed into administration on Monday after suppliers accused the company of millions of pounds in defaults.

Teneo’s insolvency specialists had been tasked with seeking to sell the business and assets of the retailer, which employs around 330 people from its Manchester base.

Frasers Group, which also owns Sports Direct and House of Fraser, confirmed on Wednesday that it had bought the intellectual property of retailer and sister brand Mennace, for around £20million.

Mogul Mike Ashley has made a name for himself buying up collapsed retailers such as House of Frasers and Jack Wills (Kirsty O’Connor/PA)

He confirmed that Missguided will continue to be operated by administrators for a transition period of approximately eight weeks.

Frasers said he then intended to continue to run Missguided as a “standalone” brand within his group.

The group’s remaining assets could still be sold separately as part of the administration.

Missguided was founded in 2009 by Nitin Passi and has grown rapidly in response to growing online fashion demand.

However, the company has been hit hard by soaring supply costs, greater inflationary pressures and declining consumer confidence in an increasingly competitive market.

Rival retailers Boohoo, Asos and JD Sports had all been linked to potential bailout deals for the company.

Michael Murray, Managing Director of Frasers Group, said: “We are delighted to secure a long-term future for Missguided, which will benefit from the strength and scale of Frasers Group’s platform and our operational excellence.

“Missguided’s digital approach to the latest trends in women’s fashion will bring additional expertise to the wider Frasers Group.”

It is part of a change in strategy planned by the Frasers Group under new boss Mr Murrary, who is also Mr Ashley’s son-in-law.

Mr Murray was previously the so-called head of uplifting the business and was tasked with modernizing the retail giant.

Missguided will become the latest struggling retail brand to join Frasers retail vehicle, after the group took over House of Fraser, Game, Evans Cycles, Jack Wills and Sofa.com in similar deals.

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