Hamley’s Chinese owner buys House of Fraser

House of Fraser is also set to stock a range of Chinese luxury products. Photo credit – House of Fraser

Hamley’s Chinese owner buys House of Fraser

C.banner, the Chinese company that owns Hamley’s toy stores and MIO, has been revealed as the new buyer of a 51 percent stake in House of Fraser.

We reported earlier in 2018 that House of Fraser owner Sanpower was in the process of selling the firm to another Chinese buyer.

The year has already seen closures and warnings from several British household names, including Maplin, Toys R Us and Claire’s Accessories.

A combination of rising import costs, wages, rents and business rates are putting UK high street retailers at risk.

Although House of Fraser hasn’t made such dire predictions for its own future, it’s clear that trading conditions are hurting the firm.

After the key Christmas trading period, they revealed that sales in stores for the six week period from the beginning of the Black Friday event to 23 December 2017 declined by 2.9%, whilst web sales were down 7.5% in the period.

The news comes after we reported in April that House of Fraser is set to stock a range of Chinese luxury products.

Offering Chinese brands to British customers could give the troubled retailer a much needed boost, and a chance to stand-out from the competition.

The exact details of which labels will be stocked haven’t been revealed yet.

However, they’re expected to be featured across the chain’s 59 stores.

Rupert Reid

Pilot and Senior Broadcast Journalist at Panda Radio. You can find him on Twitter @rupertreid