Frasers Group increases investments in Hugo Boss and Asos

Mike Ashley’s Frasers Group retail empire has increased its investments in fashion firms Hugo Boss and Asos.

he retail vehicle, which owns Sports Direct and House of Fraser, said on Monday that it now owns a 5.1% stake in online fashion retailer Asos.

Mr Ashley’s business is now the fourth largest shareholder in Asos, which owns brands including Topshop.

It comes days after Asos slumped to an annual loss and warned it will remain in the red over the first half of its new financial year, amid turnaround efforts and an “incredibly challenging” economic backdrop.

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Asos shares have fallen more than three quarters since the start of 2022 (Tim Goode/PA)

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Asos shares have fallen more than three quarters since the start of 2022 (Tim Goode/PA)

On Monday, Frasers also told investors that it has increased its investment in German fashion house Hugo Boss.

Frasers said it now has a maximum exposure to Hugo Boss of about £840 million, increasing from the £770 million exposure it reported in June.

The investment sees Frasers own 4.3% of Hugo Boss shares, while it also has a 28.5% interest via put options.

Put options are contracts which allow the owner the right to sell the asset at a future date for a previously agreed price. Put options, unlike normal shares, do not contribute to owning a majority stake or gaining voting rights at a business.

Nevertheless, the latest increased investment has given Frasers a 32.8% interest in the German firm, up from 30.9%.

“The strategic investments Frasers Group makes offer new opportunities for the company, whilst also helping to support the long-term future of the existing retail businesses, and the many thousands of jobs they sustain,” the company said.

“Frasers Group has extensive ambitions to grow the business inside and outside of the UK and is constantly exploring the potential for further expansion.”

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