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Landmark and Hobbs lead first round bids for LK Bennett

Middle-Eastern retailer Landmark Group and Hobbs are believed to be among the parties submitting first round bids for LK Bennett today.

The footwear retailer, which is being sold by Rothschild, is due to meet with interested parties today to discuss potential offer prices.

Landmark Group, which operates 600 stores in the Middle East, is believed to be interested in exploring LK Bennett's international potential, particularly in new markets such as India. Meanwhile, Hobbs, which has a strong footwear offer in its own stores, is understood to believe LK Bennett would complement its existing offer and that there would be costs benefits from merging the two.

Landmark Group has stepped up its investment activity in recent months. It already holds a stake in New Look and this week founder Micky Jagtiani bought a 7.3% stake in Debenhams, fuelling speculation that the department store could be subject to a bid. Jagtiani told The Times he would consider a join bid for Debenhams and confirmed he was interested in buying stakes in other retailers. Jagtiani is also part of the Baugur-led consortium looking at Saks in the US.

LK Bennett was put on the market by founder Linda Bennett in October, as revealed exclusively in Drapers October 27. Bennett is rumoured to be looking for around £150 million for the business she founded in .

No one from LK Bennett or Rothschild were available for comment.

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