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Jigsaw receives £27m indicative offer from brand transformation expert

Lauretta Roberts
06 September 2021

A retail and brand transformation expert has tabled an indicative £27m offer for premium fashion chain Jigsaw, it has been reported.

Henrik Madsen of HMJ International is seeking investor backing for his plans to take Jigsaw more upmarket, invest in its online business and grow its licensing arm, The Sunday Times has reported.

It is understood that a sale process is not yet underway and it is also not yet clear how Madsen will fund the deal for the chain, which was founded by John Robinson just over 50 years ago.

The chain is now now owned by Robinson and Carphone Warehouse founder David Ross, who both invested £5m in the business in 2018, as part of a wider £20m rescue deal, with Secure Trust Bank investing £10m and taking over from Barclays as its principal lender.

In that same year its CEO Peter Ruis stood down from the business and it has not had a long-standing CEO since with former Pentland Brands global president Chris Stephenson and former Jigsaw HR director Toby Foreman briefly holding the reins.

Last year retail veteran and former Bonmarche and Karen Millen CEO Beth Butterwick was brought in to steer the business before it successfully negotiated a CVA with creditors leading to the proposed closure of 19 stores. It later confirmed 13 stores closures and a switch for a further 41 stores to turnover-based rents. Prior to the pandemic, it operated 74 stores.

Last year Jigsaw also closed its luxury offshoot The Shop at Bluebird, which had sold designer labels, initially from a store on London's Kings Road before moving to Covent Garden.

However a source told The Sunday Times that, despite the firm losing £7.5 million on sales of £128.9 million in the 70 weeks to February 2020, trading since the reopening had been positive. 

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