Chinese LK Bennett supplier Byland is among bidders

LK Bennett could soon change hands to a new Chinese owner as one of its Chinese suppliers is understood to have joined the race to buy the premium clothing brand from administrators.


LK Bennett

The newly incorporated UK company called Byland UK has made the highest-value offer for LK Bennett just days before administrators are expected to secure a deal, according to Sky News.

The upmarket fashion brand favoured by Kate Middleton fell into administration, putting 500 jobs at risk of redundancy, earlier this year.

Byland UK has been set up with the purpose of acquiring the brand. Two of its directors are Feng Kangjie and Zhou Cuiqiong, whose company is a significant supplier to LK Bennett, documents filed with Companies House show.

A source told Sky News that Byland had approached LK Bennett’s former chief executive and finance director Darren Top and Andrew Ellis with regards to the offer.

On Wednesday it emerged that British footwear chain Dune has also made a bid for the fashion brand, while Sports Direct’s Mike Ashley - who has hit the headlines this week amid takeover attempts of Debenhams - was also reported to be involved in the bidding.

Administrators at EY are expected to finalise a deal to save the embattled retailer in a matter of days. The brand established by Linda Bennett, who regained full control of the business in 2017, trades from 200 stores in the UK and overseas.

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