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Fenn Wright Manson returns to roots

Fenn Wright Manson’s new owner Maxine Hargreaves-Adams is to return the womenswear retailer to its roots as she begins her turnaround of the brand.

Hargreaves-Adams, daughter of Matalan tycoon John Hargreaves, said she would focus on reviving its casualwear range after acquiring the retailer out of administration last month for an undisclosed sum.

Hargreaves-Adams said Fenn Wright Manson offer has “veered towards occasionwear”.

She said: “There’s an opportunity to bring it back to what it was, mid- to higher-end easywear at the casual side of the market.”

Hargreaves-Adams acquired the brand, eight standalone stores, its concessions in John Lewis and Brown Thomas and its online and wholesale businesses from administrators Zolfo Cooper.

She said she would not “jump into anything radical” and planned to review all parts of the business before deciding the future shape of the retailer.

Sales are understood to have deteriorated in Fenn Wright Manson’s standalone stores before it hit the buffers.

Hargreaves-Adams, former director of women’s fashion at Matalan, did not rule out further acquisitions but said her main focus was on reviving Fenn Wright Manson.

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