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Sports Direct eyeing Republic stock

Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct is bidding for stock from young fashion chain republic, Drapers has learned.

It is understood the sportswear giant has offered to buy the stock from Republic, which entered administration a fortnight ago.

One source told Drapers the deal would please suppliers, who are currently waiting to hear if they can recoup any money from the stock that was in store when republic entered administration. Neither Sports Direct nor Republic administrator Ernst & Young had responded to requests for comment as Drapers went to press.

There is still uncertainty as to the future of republic, and the deadline for interested parties to make a bid for part or all of the business passed last week.

This week it emerged that Jason Hargreaves, son of Matalan founder John Hargreaves, is leading a bid for Republic, with young fashion chain Blue Inc also a frontrunner.

Ernst & Young has closed five stores so far, with the remaining 116 expected to continue trading

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