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Apax snaps up Matchesfashion

Private equity firm Apax Partners is acquiring a majority stake in luxury fashion retailer Matchesfashion.

The deal was agreed for an undisclosed sum, however it was previously widely estimated to be £800m.

Founders Tom and Ruth Chapman will retain minority stakes in the business, as well as existing venture capital backers Scottish Equity Partners (SEP) and Highland Europe.

The deal is expected to complete over the next three months. 

Chief executive Ulric Jerome and chief financial officer Fiona Greiner will remain at the business.

Tom Chapman said: “After 30 years of growing this business Ruth and I are ready to take on new challenges while remaining shareholders and taking on an advisory role.”

Jerome said: “Apax’s experience in both consumer and technology spaces will be a great fit with our business and I look forward to working with them to strengthen our unique positioning.”

Matchesfashion, which was founded in 1987, employs more than 500 people. It delivers to 176 countries and its offering comprises more than 450 established and new generation designers.

It also operates five physical stores in London and is set to expand next year with a launch in Mayfair, at 5 Carlos Place.

Apax has previously invested in Tommy Hilfiger and used to own New Look

Readers' comments (1)

  • Eric Musgrave

    In November 1992 Ruth and Tom Chapman won a cheque for £1,000 as part of their prize for being named Drapers Record Independent Retailer of the Year. (It was the second year the contest had been run). Well done to them for slightly increasing their "prize money" in the deal with Apax. Just shows you what a Drapers Award can do for your business.

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