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Agent Provocateur owner seeks sale

Agent Provocateur’s owner, venture capital group 3i, is reported to have appointed restructuring firm AlixPartners to devise a turnaround plan for the luxury lingerie chain before it is put up for sale.

Insiders told The Sunday Times that specialists in distressed companies, such as Alteri Investors and Rutland Partners, are expected to be interested in buying the firm. The newspaper quoted a retail source as valuing the business at as little as £15m.

In 2007 3i bought a £60m controlling stake in the business from Joe Corré, the son of fashion designer Dame Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren. Corré has since left the business.

3i wrote down the value of the business by £39m last November following accounting irregularities.

3i declined to comment to The Sunday Times.

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