Harrods has been forced to shelve plans to sell off its pension fund. The Knightsbridge department store owned by Mohamed al-Fayed has been in negotiations with Pension Corporation, a buyout firm run by Edmund Truell, about offloading its liabilities to around 1,000 staff and former staff since last November.
The company admitted to bringing forward a review of its £200m fund in order to weigh up the sale of liabilities through either a buy-out or buy-in deal, where certain liabilities are insured rather than sold. But it's believed that Harrods will not sell the fund now. "Pricing in this market is sharp and there was clear blue water between the valuations," said a source. "That's why there's not going to be a deal."
The pension fund was nearly £20m in deficit at the end of January last year, according to the firm's latest set of accounts filed at Companies House.
A Harrods spokeswoman said: "At the moment, we are not selling off our pension fund." Pension Corporation did not respond to calls.