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Peacocks calls off sale

Value chain Peacocks will not be sold after all because there was insufficient interest from potential buyers.

A potential price tag of £600m was attached to the business which launched a strategic review, widely expected to lead to a sale, in June.

Peacocks is backed by hedge funds Och-Ziff and Perry Capital, which hold a stake of 25%, and investment bank Goldman Sachs which has 10%. Chief executive Richard Kirk, owns 30%.

The retailer has 900 shops in the UK, including those trading under sister fascia Bonmarche, and has been expanding in Eastern Europe and the Middle East.

Kirk, who led Peacocks as a private firm, floated it in 1999 and then bought it off the public market in a £420m deal in 2006, said in June that the business had been trading well and like-for-likes were up in “high single digits”.

Privately owned clothing retailers have met with a mixed reaction from potential buyers this year. A proposed sale of Matalan for more than £1bn fell through and New Look was forced to pull its planned IPO. However SuperGroup, owner of the ultra-trendy Superdry brand, floated successfully.

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