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VF Corporation and Kellwood eye Rock & Republic

VF Corporation, the US owner of brands including The North Face, Wrangler, 7 For All Mankind and Lee, and US brands house Kellwood, which owns premium lifestyle brand and retailer Vince, are understood to be circling bankrupt denim brand Rock & Republic.

The two companies are understood to have run a slide rule over the brand before but walked away when Rick & Republic owner Michael Ball insisted on keeping a share of the business and staying on in a creative role.

However, according to reports, discussions are understood to have intensified with Ball admitting that he was considering deals that could see him walk away from the company he founded after negoiations with another potential buyer collapsed.

New York investor Bluestar Alliance had been working on a deal to buy the company out of Chapter 11. However the deal fell through last month after Bluestar had difficulty raising the cash to complete the deal.

Rock & Republic filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on April 1, the day before a $15m (£9.5m) loan was due to be paid back to creditor Richard Koral.

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