Battling retailer, Marks & Spencer was today declining to comment further on offers for its upmarket American men's suit chain, Brooks Brothers.

M&S yesterday announced that it was selling Brooks Brothers as part of a massive restructuring programme to focus on its UK market.

Press reports in both the US and Italy say there are several names eyeing up the chain which M&S bought in 1987 for a reputed $750m.

One report said that retailers Saks and the Nieman Marcus Group are likely to be among those considering bidding, whereas another said that luxury footwear maker, Tod's SpA, was considering snapping up the chain from M&S. Tod's has an agreement to distribute Brooks Brothers in Italy.

An M&S spokesman told just-style: "We can't comment further until we have accepted an offer."

Brooks Brothers, which also sells some women's wear, has around 80 retail and 72 factory stores in America.

It also sells its merchandise in 70 locations in Japan, five in Hong Kong and two in Taiwan.

But it may not be all plain sailing for M&S. Analysts say that men's formal wear has been in the doldrums in the US in line with the slowing US economy.

A total of 4,390 jobs are to go at M&S as part of its massive restructuring programme. This includes the closure of its Direct catalogue business in the UK and the closure of its Continental Europe stores.

By Deborah Bowyer