JD Sports is in exclusive talks with Debenhams that would see the troubled department chain acquired by the sportswear business, according to reports.
Debenhams fell into administration in April for the second time. The coronavirus has hit the destitute department store hard, with stores closed and thousands of jobs axed due to the virus.
According to The Times, JD Sports is interested in Debenhams because its website is still one of the most popular shopping destinations, and such a move would allow the sports retailer to snap up cheap space on the high street.
Insiders have said the JD Sports deal could still fall through.
Retail tycoon and House of Fraser owner Mike Ashley was said to be “furious” about being “frozen out” of Debenhams sales talks last month. The mogul previously owned 30 per cent of Debenhams and lost £150m when the chain was taken over by its lenders last year.
Debenhams and JD Sports declined to comment on reports of the deal.