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Daily Round Up: Sports Direct abandons Blacks bid; Laura Ashley sales rise; Jaeger Stratford store opens

From around the web and the nationals

SPORTS DIRECT, the sportswear retailer, has abandoned its plans to bid for up-for-sale outdoor specialist Blacks. The sports giant, which already owns 22.5% of the beleaguered retailer, did not give a reason for its withdrawal from the process. Earlier this month Blacks dropped plans to raise fresh capital and put itself up for sale after failing to secure extra funding from shareholders and potential new investors.

LAURA ASHLEY, the home and fashion retailer, has posted a rise in like-for-like sales as it progressed with plans to shut unprofitable shops. Like-for-likes advanced 1.4% in the 19 weeks to December 10, bringing the year to date improvement to 2.5%. Total sales at Laura Ashley fell 1.7% year-on-year, mainly as a result of reshaping the store portfolio. Five unprofitable stores have been closed so far this year, on top of 14 last year.

JAEGER, the premium retailer, has today opened a new store in Westfield Stratford stocking both men’s and womenswear. The 2,700 sq ft store is the first Jaeger store to open in East London in over 60 years and features a new shop concept.

SCOOP INTERNATIONAL, the contemporary womenswear trade show, will feature the largest line up for its third edition with more than 150 brands planning to show. New signings for this season include Gat Rimon, Sita Murt, Nocturne, Bastyan, Twin-Set, Ali Ro and Spijkers en Spijkers. The show will take place at the Saatchi Gallery from February 12 to 14.

WEEKEND OFFENDER, the men’s streetwear brand, opened a flagship store in London this week after signing up to a 10-year lease. The 1,200 sq ft store on D’Arblay Street played host to a launch party on Wednesday to mark the opening.

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