Suitors from the world’s leading fashion companies try on shoe maker Dr. Custom Martens

By Mark Shapland

Updated: April 21, 2024, 11:41 am

Dr. Martens is surrounded by some of the world’s leading fashion companies and could be on the verge of falling into the hands of foreign owners, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.

The iconic British shoe maker is struggling as a listed company on the London Stock Exchange.

Dr. Martens made waves in January 2021 with a huge valuation of £3.7 billion.

But the Northamptonshire-based company has failed to deliver on its expectations and its shares have fallen 70 per cent in the past two years.

The company, located in the village of Wollaston, is experiencing problems in the United States, especially at its distribution center in Los Angeles.

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Last week, Dr. Martens unveiled a fifth profit warning in just three years and shook up the management team. He replaced CEO Kenny Wilson with Ije Nwokorie.

A hedge fund investor who asked not to be named said: “We’ve spoken to management and something is in the offing.”

Potential suitors include Louis Vuitton owner LVMH and VF Corporation in the US, the company behind Timberland, Vans and the North Face. Both declined to comment.

John Stevenson, analyst at Peel Hunt, continued: ‘With the recovery hampered by slower-moving wholesale markets, Dr Martens appears vulnerable to approaches.’

A spokesperson for Dr. Martens declined to comment.

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