Jigsaw strikes £20m deal with Carphone Warehouse founder becoming major investor

Jigsaw
Jigsaw

Premium fashion retailer Jigsaw has struck a deal which will lead to £20m of cash being pumped into the business by its founder John Robinson, Carphone Warehouse founder David Ross and a new lender, the Secure Trust Bank.

According to Sky News, the deal will be completed today, and involved Robinson and Ross (via one of his companies) investing £5m each and Secure Trust Bank investing £10m and replacing Barclays as the retailer’s principal lender.

It emerged last autumn that Jigsaw was searching for new investors or a potential buyer after it was hit by a cash pinch in the lead up to Christmas due to the drop in the value of sterling and higher import costs, although the business, which has 80 stores, had been trading well.

Earlier this month its CEO Peter Ruis stood down fuelling speculation that a deal was coming close to completion. It was believed that South African groups Foschini (owner of Hobbs, Phase Eight and Whistles) and Truworths (owner of Office) had been vying to buy the business, but news of Ross’s interest emerged in February. Ross and Robinson, who established Jigsaw in 1970, are friends.

Following the departure of Ruis, who had led the business for 4.5 years, Charles Atterton, chairman of the business and its former co-CEO took on an executive role.