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Mike Ashley once boasted he had “balls of steel”. Frankly, for anyone else to spend £45 million on shares in Debenhams after its Christmas drubbing, you’d need them.

House of Fraser keeps options open as Lafayette bid looms

The French department store Galeries Lafayette is in exclusive talks to buy its British rival House of Fraser.

House of Fraser eyes July float if Lafayette talks fail

House of Fraser could float on the stock market as soon as July, if exclusive talks with French department store Galeries Lafayette collapse.

The Business Matrix: Thursday 26 September 2013

Baby boom helps Cussons profits

Furniture retailer Dwell collapses after failed attempts to find white knight

Upmarket furniture chain Dwell today closed all its stores and ceased trading both on the High Street and online with immediate effect, with the potential loss of 300 jobs.

House of Fraser defies High Street gloom with record sales and profits

House of Fraser, the privately owned department store chain, showed today it is defying the gloom on the High Street with record levels of sales and profits.

What the Sunday papers said

Independent on Sunday: Aviva faces new investor row at annual meeting

Light bites: Brighten up meal times with a splash of colour

1 | Babell Tiered Fruit Dish £19.80, Koziol. This three-tiered plastic stand makes a red-hot table centrepiece. 0121 224 7728, redcandy.co.uk

Investment Insider: Home shoppers may not help retailers out of their slump, but watch out for overseas growth

Begbies Traynor, the business recovery group, reckons almost 140, mainly smaller, retailers are in a financially critical situation. It has also cautioned that as consumers tighten their belts after Christmas there could be a surge of insolvencies during the first quarter of 2013.

Warm weather stifled sales at House of Fraser

House of Fraser has blamed warm weather, the consumer downturn and costs associated with opening a new distribution centre for a sharp fall in its profits last year.

Matalan founder makes womenswear buy

John Hargreaves, the founder of Matalan, has acquired Fenn Wright Manson, the womenswear retailer, out of administration.

Firemen douse the charred remains of the Reeves furniture store in Croydon, south of London, on 9 August

Man admits starting House of Reeves Croydon riot blaze

A man today admitted starting a massive fire which destroyed a family-run furniture shop during the riots last year.

Lombok calls in administrators

The furniture chain Lombok went into administration yesterday in a move resulting in the closure of nine stores.

Jane Norman fights Baugur's legacy to the high street

Two years after the Icelandic investor imploded many UK companies are still reeling. James Thompson reports

'Mary Queen of Shops' puts her head on the block in Oxford Street

Retail guru Mary Portas will risk her reputation when she opens her own store this summer
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