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Arcadia chief executive Stuart Rose
"The perception is in the market that our business has been over complicated"
 real 28k

Retail Intelligence Group's Bryan Roberts
"It now needs to build on its core successful brands"
 real 56k

Thursday, 5 April, 2001, 11:17 GMT 12:17 UK
Arcadia to sell five chains

The UK clothing group Arcadia has announced another major restructuring with its decision to sell five of its 14 fashion chains.

The group said it is in talks to sell off stores Warehouse and Principles, as well as catalogue businesses Racing Green and Hawkshead to a management buy-out team.

As expected, Arcadia is also planning to sell Wade Smith, the Liverpool-based designer retailer, in a separate deal.

Arcadia made the announcement as it reported pre-tax profits of 29.1m for half year to 24 February.

This compares with forecasts of 20m and a loss of 8.6m last year.

The fashion chain said it would focus on its six top performing brands, including Top Shop, Top Man and Dorothy Perkins.

Reaping the benefits

The company reported that total sales were up by 0.8%, despite 11.2% less floor space.

Arcadia's decision to cut space by closing down stores has helped to reduce its expensive rental bill.

Stuart Rose, chief executive
Stuart Rose: "We can't run 13 brands effectively"
"We have made significant progress in our review of the business and the re-shaping of the Group is now underway," said Stuart Rose, chief executive.

The company launched a major corporate restructuring a year ago, cutting 450 of its 2,200 stores and axing 3,500 jobs.

"The decision to simplify the business will enable us to focus on our core brands and the proposed sale of the niche brands takes us forward in this aim," said Mr Rose.

"The others are still good businesses, but we can't run 13 brands effectively," he added.

Arcadia brands
Burton Menswear
Dorothy Perkins
Topshop
Evans
Principles
Racing Green
Hawkshead
Miss Selfridge
Wallis
Warehouse
Outfit
Arcadia owns some of the UK's best-known High Street brands, including Top Shop, Burtons Menswear, Evans and Dorothy Perkins.

The UK's second largest clothes retailer, which has about 10% of the UK clothing market, had been expected to announce a clearance sale of its less successful brands.

For most of last year, its share price has struggled to rise above about 40p. On Thursday the stock jumped 13% to 218.5p by 0900 UK time (0800 GMT).

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See also:

04 Apr 01 | Business
Arcadia's clearance sale
18 Jan 01 | Business
Arcadia sees sales up
13 Nov 00 | Business
Top Shop owner poaches Iceland chief
19 Oct 00 | Business
Arcadia plunges into loss
13 Apr 00 | Business
Arcadia ditches jobs and shops
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