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What the weekend newspapers said: June 13-14

The best of the fashion business-related headlines from the weekend newspapers…

Sports Direct

Sports Direct has opened a discount store in the former Burberry shop in London’s West End selling product for as little as £1. Sports Direct is understood to be using the store to clear stock from brands including Kangol and No Fear, returned to it by JJB Sports earlier this year, according to The Mail on Sunday. The newspaper reported that the move would infuriate landlord the Crown Estate, which recently blocked discount chain TK Maxx opening a store on Piccadilly Circus.

La Senza

Retail entrepreneur and star of the BBC 2 series Dragon’s Den Theo Paphitis has quit the board of lingerie chain La Senza, according to The Sunday Times. The newspaper said that Paphitis had quit on June 1 after differences of opinion over how the business should be run. Paphitis was thought to have sought to buy a majority stake in the retailer a few weeks after chief executive Rose Foster left the business but the newspaper said these talks had broken down. The newspaper said that Paphitis may now look to buy debt in the business which, if a restructuring took place, could give him control by the back door.

Debenhams

Debenhams has told junior managers that it will cut their bonuses in the economic downturn, according to The Mail on Sunday. The newspaper said that the move had angered staff at the business who were told the bonus cuts were necessary to reduce the risk of job cuts. However, Debenhams will pay a higher than planned pay rise next year, to follow a 1.5% increase last March.

Woolworths

The Sunday Times said that Sir Geoff Mulcahy, the former chief executive of Kingfisher which once owned Woolworths, had been lined up to become chairman of a new Woolworths-style variety chain. Tony Page, the former managing director of Woolworths, is attempting to raise funds to help him buy back vacant Woolworths sites to set up a new value chain.

Tesco

Tesco is likely to post a like-for-like sales increase of 3.5% for the 13 weeks to May 30, according to The Suday Telegraph. This would be an improvement on the 2.7% growth in the final of last year. The newspaper said that the grocer’s strategy to introduce discount ranges to help it compete with the growing popularity of Aldi and Lidl, was likely to have helped trade.

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