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The Cambridge Satchel Company bags $21m investment

The Cambridge Satchel Company has received a $21m (£12.7m) investment from Index Ventures, with the British-made leather goods brand planning to make a series of key hires in the next year.

Index Ventures has taken an undisclosed minority stake in the business, which was set up by Julie Deane and her mother Freda Thomas in 2008 with just £600 and is best known for its range of satchels. Deane remains the majority shareholder.

Deane plans to use the investment to create a layer of management, and plans to hire heads of divisions across digital, marketing, technology, international, retail, PR and merchandising.

“Now is the time to have dedicated people to help up the different teams in the business,” said Deane.

The company will also use the investment to grow its digital presence, particularly overseas.

“We wanted to find a partner to help grow the business and open new doors. We want to see what new opportunities there are on the digital front. If you look at Burberry, and the vision [Burberry chief executive] Angela Ahrendts has, we want to do that…we want to bring digital into bricks-and-mortar.”

The investment will also be used to grow its Leicestershire manufacturing base and expand its apprenticeship scheme.

The Cambridge Satchel Company is sold via independents and through its Covent Garden and Cambridge stores and a recently opened at pop-up shop at Spitalfields. It has 110 employees and sells to more than 100 countries.


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