Dubai/London: Qatar Holding, the investment arm of the Gulf state's sovereign wealth fund, is not considering a bid for British retailer Marks & Spencer (M&S), a source close to the fund said yesterday.
Shares in M&S jumped eight per cent in early trading yesterday after The Sunday Times newspaper said the Qatar Investment Authority wanted to assemble a consortium to mount an 8-billion-pound ($12.1 billion) takeover of Britain's biggest clothing retailer.
Qatar Holding is the vehicle through which the wealth fund conducts some of its biggest overseas investments.
M&S declined to comment.
Despite the denial from the source, some leading analysts think Marks & Spencer, whose core women's clothes business has been losing market share, could be vulnerable to a private equity bid.