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Farfetch Investors Form Group to Oppose Coupang Acquisition

A newly formed group of institutional investors with a massive stake in Farfetch is requesting immediate pay back on the company’s debts amid fear that a deal with Coupang will further erode the e-tailer’s value.
Two models in a Farfetch image.
Farfetch's investors are requesting immediate payback of debts and pushing back on its deal with Coupang. (Farfetech)

Farfetch’s financial stress continues only a month after finding its white knight.

A group of investors, called the 2027 Ad Hoc Group, formed this month to stop South Korean e-commerce firm Coupang’s forthcoming acquisition of the embattled luxury e-tailer.

That deal, which was announced last December and included a $500 million bridge loan to keep Farfetch afloat, is not yet finalised. It also wiped out all equity holders, including company employees. The group, which holds more than 50 percent of Farfetch’s convertible notes that are due in 2027, is requesting that Farfetch pay back those debts in full immediately.

The Ad Hoc Group group has expressed fear that Farfetch is locked into its deal with Coupang and the e-tailer’s value will plummet under the South Korean firm’s ownership. The terms of Coupang’s bridge loan requires any competing bidder to foot a $1 billion fee and a $20 million termination fee.

The Ad Hoc Group also accused Farfetch of a lack of transparency on its cash troubles. Last August, Farfetch projected it would end 2023 with $800 million in cash but was frantically seeking a bailout four months later. Farfetch, which went public in 2018, ended 2023 with around $2.8 billion in financial obligations that include convertible notes, according to estimates from Bernstein.

Other backers quickly came to grips with their losses. In a December statement, Richemont said it did not expect $300 million in loans it had issued to Farfetch to be repaid.

Farfetch declined to comment. Coupang did not respond to a request for comment.

Further Reading

The South Korean e-commerce firm Coupang has saved Farfetch from potential bankruptcy, and could use its logistical and marketing might to solve some of the luxury e-tailer’s seemingly intractable problems. But “everything stores” have a spotty track record when it comes to high-end retail.


The deal provides the online luxury giant with $500 million in emergency funding. A complex transaction that would have seen Farfetch acquire a 47.5 percent stake in Yoox-Net-a-Porter from Richemont is dead.


About the author
Malique Morris
Malique Morris

Malique Morris is Direct-to-Consumer Correspondent at The Business of Fashion. He is based in New York and covers digital-native brands and shifts in the online shopping industry.

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