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LONDON-Minerva has put the Allders department stores up for sale for undisclosed sum.Scarlett Retail Group, a consortium led by Minerva and also including Lehman Brothers, bought Allders for about euro 235 million ($316 million) in 2003.

“Minerva Plc and Lehman Brothers Limited, the principal shareholders of Scarlett Retail Group Limited, announce that they have initiated a process for the sale of Scarlett Retail Group Limited, the holding company of Allders Limited [formerly Allders Plc],” Minerva says in a statement. “Expressions of interest have been received from the existing management team and other potential acquirers, although the sale process is at its preliminary stages.”

Minerva said in July it had received a takeover approach for its whole business and at the time industry sources suggested that bids could value the whole of Minerva at about euro 755 million ($1 billion). Minerva shares currently value the business at about euro 684 million ($906.8 million).

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