The group behind major high street brands including Topshop, Burton and Dorothy Perkins could collapse within hours - with 13,000 staff facing losing their job.
Sir Philip Green's Arcadia group is likely to enter administration today. Senior insiders say no last minute rescue deal is expected.
That's despite a £50million loan offer from billionaire rival and Newcastle Football club owner Mike Ashley.
Mr Ashley's Frasers Group wrote to Arcadia on Sunday saying it would offer an emergency to help with the group's short-term cash-flow problems.
However insiders have reportedly told the BBC that even with a £50million loan Arcadia would be 'impossible to save'.Insurance Loans Mortgage Attorney Credit Lawyer
Meanwhile former city minister Baron Paul Myners today slammed Sir Philip in an interview with BBC Radio 4's Today Programme - in which he described the businessman as 'probably the rudest businessman' he had ever met.
He said: 'Covid has obviously been a significant factor, but the truth is that this group of brands has been haemorrhaging for 15 years.
Sir Philip Green's Arcadia group, which includes Topshop, is likely to enter administration today. Senior insiders say no last minute rescue deal is expected
The group behind major high street brands including Topshop, Burton and Dorothy Perkins (pictured) could collapse within hours - with 13,000 staff facing losing their job
Meanwhile former city minister Baron Paul Myners today slammed Sir Philip in an interview with BBC Radio 4's Today Programme
Marks & Spencer directors have met in recent days to discuss the possibility of buying menswear brand Austin Reed alongside its sister label Jaeger, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.
The discussion is understood to have included buying wedding and occasionwear brand Jacques Vert. All three are part of the former Edinburgh Woollen Mill empire of retail mogul Philip Day.Insurance Loans Mortgage Attorney Credit Lawyer
At the front of the queue: Marks & Spencer is understood to be in 'pole position' to buy Austin Reed, Jaeger and Jacques Vert
The group, which also housed Peacocks and Ponden Home, collapsed as high streets were hit with painful lockdown measures earlier this month with just weeks to go before Christmas.
Marks & Spencer is understood to be in 'pole position' to buy the three brands, which it would operate as a subsidiary company with separate design teams if successful, according to City sources.
Next and sportswear mogul Mike Ashley have also been named as possible buyers.
City sources also last night speculated that Marks & Spencer may examine a bid for some of Sir Philip Green's Arcadia Group brands. It is expected to appoint administrators this week.
One City source endorsed a possible M&S acquisition of Topshop as 'a great idea'.
'It has been under-invested, it's been losing market share, it's become an insignificance.
'Sir Philip Green never really expected the opportunity or or the challenge of online trading. He never really made any investment in that area at all.
'The truth is Philip Green is not a retailer. He's a man who is plaice with property and leverage. He's what we could have called in the 1970's an asset stripper.
'He doesn't invest in his business, he milks them. He takes out large rents and he and huge dividends rather than invest them.
He also criticised Sir Philip for 'failing to put enough money into the pension funds', but praised that he had previously 'stepped up' when in a similar situation with BHS.
'He's probably the rudest most foul-mouth person I've ever met in business. He was a memorable man for that if nothing else.'
But asked if he liked him he said: 'I did actually. There is an element of Philip you couldn't but enjoy, he had a very sharp brain.'