Selfridges owner ‘agrees to sell to Thai group for £4bn’

Selfridges owner, the Weston family, has agreed to sell the chain to Thai Central Group for £4 billion, according to sources reported by The Times.

The deal was agreed in the past few days according to the sources.

The Weston family wants to finalise the deal by the end of the year according to the newspaper’s sources, and negotiations could continue into next month.

Thai Central Group is one of the largest privately held conglomerates in the country, and has interests in industries such as e-commerce, hospitality, and insurance.

The conglomerate, which also owns Italian department store Rinascente, is not the only company that has expressed an interest in purchasing the Selfridges.

The department store had begun looking for new owners in July of this year.

In October, Selfridge’s owners were reported as being in talks about selling the department store chain to the Qatar sovereign wealth fund in a £4 billion deal.

Selfridges, founded in 1909, has four UK outlets: its 600,000 square feet flagship Oxford Circus store in London, one in Birmingham, and two in Manchester.

Selfridges also controls Brown Thomas and Arnotts in Ireland, Holt Renfrew in Canada, and De Bijenkorf in the Netherlands, however Qatar is reportedly only interested in the UK outlets according to the sources.

The deal would mark the first time that the department store has switched hands in almost twenty years. Selfridges was purchased by Canadian billionaire Galen Weston for £598 million in 2003.

Alannah Weston, his daughter, now leads the department store chain.

The Weston family also controls Primark’s parent company Associated British Foods, and their wealth was estimated at £10.53 billion in the 2020 Sunday Times rich list.

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