NEWCASTLE United owner Mike Ashley’s Frasers Group has issued a profit warning.

The retailer has said the new Tier 4 lockdown rules introduced for much of the South-East, during its key Christmas trading period, mean it can no longer commit to hitting expected boosts in profits of between 20 per cent and 30 per cent outlined earlier this month.

The company said: “From Sunday 20 December 2020, the Government closed non-essential retail in London, the South East, and East of England with no warning.

“This has led to virtually all of our stores closing in these areas.”

Frasers Group is still understood to be one of around 30 companies interested in buying parts of the collapsed High Street trader Arcadia, which owns brands including Topshop, Burton and Miss Selfridge.

If Sir Philip Green’s Arcadia is not bought out of administration, 13,000 jobs are at risk.

However, administrators of the business say they have found a buyer for one of the brands, plus-sized retailer Evans.

City Chic, an Australian-listed women’s plus-sized clothes seller, will pay £23 million to buy the brand.

The deal is expected to close on Wednesday.

Administrators at Deloitte added: “The process to secure new owners for the other Arcadia Group brands is ongoing.

“There have been significant expressions of interest for all brands.

“The joint administrators expect to provide a further update in the new year.”