Kuwait firm picks up troubled La Senza


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The Independent Online

The struggling lingerie chain La Senza's UK arm fell into Kuwaiti hands last night after the international franchise operator Alshaya struck a deal with administrators KPMG, safeguarding 1,100 jobs.

La Senza fell into administration last month but Alshaya has acquired the exclusive franchise rights to the brand in the UK and 60 stores. Alshaya plans to invest £100m in the brand over the next two years, designing new collections and overhauling stores.

The acquisition deepens the firm's long-standing links with the UK as the international franchise partner for a host of high-street big names, including Mothercare, Debenhams, Boots, Next, River Island and Topshop.

As well as buying the stores from the administrator, Alshaya also struck a deal with Limited Brands, the US-based owner of the La Senza brand, for the rights to the name in the UK. Its executive chairman, Mohammed Alshaya, said: "This is a strategic investment for us and a positive addition to our extensive international retail portfolio."

Alshaya operates more than 55 international brands in 19 countries, employing over 22,000 staff.