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Product overhaul still on Adams Kids’ agenda

John Shannon, the former owner of the Adams Kids chain, who rescued a slimmed-down version of the kidswear business last week, will press ahead with his strategy to create a “Topshop for kids” and will look to open 10 shopping-centre stores.

Shannon, who first bought the business in January 2007, completed a deal via a new company called JS Childrenswear to buy 120 stores from administrator PricewaterhouseCoopers last week. The deal saved about 1,900 jobs.

Shannon told Drapers: “Adams went into administration because the Bank of Ireland would not continue to support us. Our strategy will remain the same, and we will continue what we started.”

When Shannon first bought the Adams Childrenswear business two years ago, he said his aim was to address the fashionability of Adams Kids’ product and create “a Topshop for kids”. He had already begun a roll-out of a new store concept to support the improved product ranges, but the business fell into administration on December 31.

Shannon said he would look for 10 new stores over the next six months on the back of the success he had seen at Adams Kids’ new concept shops in the Liverpool One and Westfield London shopping centres.

He said: “The evolution in the fashionability of the collection has gone very well. We’ve had strong like-for-like sales.”

Shannon added: “My priority in the short term is to get the shops back up to good stock levels in time for Easter.”

Adams managing director David Carter-Johnson and buying director Lindsey Williams will remain at the business. However, finance director Judy McBride has left the company. Shannon said he was seeking a replacement.

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