Today’s news in brief

South Korean e-commerce giant Coupang has reportedly reached an agreement to acquire Farfetch in a $500m rescue deal. The transaction involves a bridge loan to Farfetch and negotiations with a group of debtholders holding a significant portion of Farfetch’s term loan. The London-based luxury retailer is expected to undergo acquisition through a pre-pack administration process. Coupang’s CEO, Bom Kim, emphasises Farfetch’s commitment to providing an elevated experience for exclusive brands while pursuing steady growth as a private company. This development follows recent reports of Farfetch seeking a last-minute rescue deal with private equity-backed buyers and exploring emergency funding with Apollo Global Management.

Superdry has issued a profit warning for the 26-week period ending October 28, citing a 13% year-on-year sales drop attributed to abnormally mild weather. The decline in wholesale sales, down 41.1% due to exiting the US wholesale operation, and other challenges prompted Superdry to secure a £25m secondary lending facility with Hilco Capital Limited. Despite progress in cost savings and inventory reduction, the unseasonal weather affected the uptake of the Autumn/Winter range, leading to weaker-than-expected business performance. Founder and CEO Julian Dunkerton notes modest signs of improvement but acknowledges ongoing challenges in current trading.

Revolution Beauty has appointed Erin Cast as president of North America. Cast, with over 25 years of experience in beauty, food & beverage, and omnichannel retail, will build on the group’s foundations in the US and Canadian markets. Previously, she served as the general manager of Royal Canin at Mars and the CMO, Global Consumer Beauty at Coty. Revolution Beauty sees North America as a priority market and aims to leverage Cast’s expertise to drive growth in the region. The brand, known for its product innovation and accessible pricing, looks to expand its presence in a market with significant growth potential.

Asda has opened a record 81 new Asda Express stores in December, bringing the total to 229 nationwide. The accelerated conversion process, including recent acquisitions of Co-op and EG UK sites, aims to have 1000 stores across the UK and Northern Ireland by March 2024, marking Asda’s largest estate in its 58-year history. The convenience-focused expansion includes the first Asda Express store in Manchester city centre and three new stores in London. Asda plans to open an additional 11 Express stores in the capital in 2024. These stores offer up to 3,000 branded and own-label products, catering to diverse customer needs, from essential items to on-the-go meals.


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