Fashion firm Boohoo has confirmed that it has made an offer to acquire the online business of UK brands Karen Millen and Coast.
Boohoo, an online-only retailer, said acquiring the website operations of the two brands “would represent highly complementary additions”.
But it said there was no guarantee that any deal would be done.
High Street brand Karen Millen was put up for sale by its Icelandic owners, Kaupthing bank, in June.
Any move to buy Karen Millen would see parts of Coast – another womenswear brand that it acquired out of administration last autumn – would also be included in the deal.
The sales process has been led over the past six weeks by Deloitte.
Boohoo did not specify whether the potential deal involves any plans for the two retailers’ physical stores.
Sources told Sky, which first reported the news, that the firms were being bought through a process called pre-pack administration, which would be initiated once Deloitte had been appointed as administrator to Karen Millen.
Karen Millen operates in 65 countries and employs 1,700 staff worldwide. In the UK, it has 57 stores, with concessions at John Lewis and Selfridges.
Boohoo said its offer was part of a plan “to lead the fashion e-commerce market globally”.