New owners of Selfridges are planning a luxury hotel at London’s flagship store


The new owner of Selfridges plans to develop luxury hotels and serviced apartments as part of the refurbishment of the brand’s flagship Oxford Street store, according to senior executives at the Austrian real estate group Signa, which joined the Thai retailer Central Group. doing. £ 4bn bid..

Signa and Central, which already own Signa and Swiss luxury stores KaDeWe and Globus, also upgraded Selfridges’ food hall after purchasing a British brand from the Weston family, and Signa’s executive chair Dieter Burning House is financial. I told the Times.

“We plan to replace the Selfridges food hall,” Burning House said. “This is one of the core competencies of the group, KaDeWe, Globus. We operate the best luxury food delicatessen business in the world.”

Some of Selfridges’ Oxford Street properties have been empty since 2008, when the old Selfridges Hotel was closed.

According to Burninghouse, the development of hotels and apartments means “great value upside potential” for new owners of Selfridges. “The purchase price only reflects the reputation of Selfridges’ major buildings and their retail use,” he added.

A person in one industry has expressed confidence in the plan. Peter Williams, former Selfridges Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Retailer Mr. Specks, said:

With the planned acquisition of Selfridges in the UK, Ireland and the Netherlands by Signa and Central, the group’s combined luxury department stores will have annual sales of more than € 7 billion by 2024, compared to € 5 billion in 2019. High is expected.

The fusion of Cigna’s real estate knowledge and Central’s retail know-how was “a rare combination, but also very complementary,” said someone who knew both groups.

The partnership dates back to 2014 with the acquisition of KaDeWe in Berlin, Alsterhaus in Hamburg and Oberpollinger in Munich, as part of the bankrupt retail group Karstadt.

After opening up luxury stores and forming the KaDeWe group, Cigna’s manager, led by founder Rene Benco, needs a European partner who knows how to run a premium retail business, Galeries Lafayette in France and Rinascente in Italy. I thought about.

Central, owned by the Chirathivat family in Bangkok, acquired Rinascente in 2011. He then oversaw the transformation of the business from 1996 to 2003 and is now the Chief Executive Officer of Central Europe.

Central operates many of Thailand’s most exclusive stores and malls, integrating food and beverage and retail, and was a pioneer in recognizing and responding to luxury retail as a global phenomenon.

According to someone familiar with Central’s thinking, the group was looking for a partner with a longer-term perspective than a private-equity investor. Central did not respond to the request for an interview.

Cigna’s manager knew Ladis and made contact with Chiratibato through him. In 2015, Austrians sold 50.1% of KaDeWe’s business to Central and retained ownership of the property.

The acquisition of Globus and Selfridges will evenly divide management and real estate ownership.

The partner has invested more than 600 million euros in KaDeWe to completely refurbish and refurbish the German store. They brought in luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton, Dior and Balenciaga and made a big foray into online retail. Globus has set up a rooftop restaurant in its flagship store and built a whole new store in Bern.

The ties between their holding families have grown. Prior to the pandemic, Chirathivats and his European partners met four times a year, alternating between Asia and Europe for business talks with family days. “We are a very professional partnership, but we have a very close friendship based on the same values,” says Burning House.

Selfridges trading occurs at a very difficult time for retailers during the online shopping pandemic and challenges. question Whether groups like Cigna can continue to invest in the expectations of rising valuations.

Apart from this, Benco was one of the 12 most recently nominated Austrians. Criminal accusation Prosecutors claim that donations to charities have been exchanged for political interests over a corruption scandal involving green party politician Christoph Choher. Through a spokesman, Chorherr and Benko denied cheating and said donations had nothing to do with any business.

With the acquisition of Selfridges, which requires antitrust approval in the EU and UK, Cigna and the media shy Central will gain more international attention.

Follow John Reed on Twitter. @JohnReedwrites

New owners of Selfridges are planning a luxury hotel at London’s flagship store

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The post New owners of Selfridges are planning a luxury hotel at London’s flagship store appeared first on Eminetra.


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