Berlin's renowned luxury department store KaDeWe

Thai Billionaire Acquires Berlin’s Luxury Store KaDeWe

Berlin’s renowned luxury department store KaDeWe has changed hands, now owned by the Thai Central Group.

The transaction, valued at one billion euros, involves the acquisition from the bankrupt Signa Group, with the deal reportedly completed by several involved parties on Wednesday.

The Central Group, owned by Thai billionaire Tos Chirathivat, is not new to the retail scene, already holding a majority stake in the KaDeWe Group’s operating company since 2015 but not the property itself.

The Central Group finalized an option to acquire half of the property in early 2023, but the purchase was not completed until recently, leading to the acquisition of the entire property.

Signa Prime Selection, the subsidiary owning the KaDeWe property along with other high-value buildings like Munich’s Oberpollinger and Hamburg’s Alsterhaus, filed for bankruptcy shortly after Christmas. The KaDeWe Group itself declared bankruptcy at the end of January, citing the restructuring as an opportunity for a new beginning despite having its most profitable fiscal year in 2022/2023.

Central Group consists of a variety of diverse investments in various corporations in Thailand and abroad, each of which has become a leader in the retail, property development, brand management, hospitality, and food and beverage sectors, and in digital lifestyle.

Internationally, the group has acquired the Italian department store chain La Rinascente in 2011 and, more recently, partnering with Signa to purchase the British department store chain Selfridges in 2021. The Central Group is also reportedly in advanced talks to take over Signa’s shares in Selfridges, further consolidating its position in the global retail market.

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