German clothing retailer C&A is examining partnerships and other types of outside investment as it develops a turnaround plan focusing on China and other emerging markets. Swiss-based COFRA Holding issued a statement in response to a report in Spiegel Online that C&A, which was founded in the 19th century and remains in family ownership, was close to being sold to a group of unnamed Chinese investors.
The company is committed to a successful, future-proof C&A business and as such at C&A it has embarked on a transformation and growth programme, says a COFRA Holding representative. The ongoing transformation of C&A includes an investigation of ways to accelerate in high growth priority areas. These included “China, emerging markets that could potentially include partnerships and other types of additional external investment.
C&A was founded as a confectionery business in 1841 by brothers Clemens and August Brenninkmeyer, and today runs more than 1,500 stores, employs 35,000 people and operates in 18 European countries. The business, controlled via COFRA by more than 1,000 descendants of the Brenninkmeyers, has struggled of late to compete with fast-fashion brands and online retailers. Caparros, formerly of German supermarket chain REWE, was hired as chief executive of C&A in mid-2017, replacing Philippe Brenninkmeijer in a break from the tradition of a family member running the company.