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Sun 8 Feb 2009 02:25 PM

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Dubai fund not in talks to sell Barneys - Dubai World

Dubai gov't-owned investment agency denies talks to sell US luxury retailer.

Dubai government investment agency Istithmar World is not in talks to sell US luxury retailer Barneys New York Inc, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, chairman of Dubai World, of which the agency is a unit, said.

"We have not announced nor [sought] anybody regarding Barneys," Bin Sulayem told reporters at the opening of port container operator DP World's new terminal in Djibouti.

Last month, Bloomberg reported Istithmar World may sell Barneys, less than two years after buying it as the fund struggles with losses and the luxury market slows.

Bloomberg said Istithmar  did not want to sell the business for less than the $942.3 million it paid for it in 2007, and that the state-owned fund had had calls from potential buyers and would sell its entire stake.

Istithmar World is a unit of state-owned Dubai World and one of the investment agencies established by Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum to invest the emirate's wealth abroad. (Reuters)

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