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JD boss promises ‘business as usual’ for Peter Werth

Stockists of menswear brand Peter Werth have welcomed news that deliveries will not be affected after the brand’s rescue from administration by JD Sports Fashion.

The retailer acquired the brand, intellectual property and stock of Brand Acquisitions, the business behind Peter Werth and contemporary womenswear brand Pink Soda, last week for an undisclosed sum, saving 68 jobs at Peter Werth concessions. Peter Werth’s only standalone store, in Liverpool, was closed before the deal as part of the administration.

Brand Acquisitions went into administration on May 13 after investor Electra Quoted Management pulled funding. It will now sit in JD’s distribution arm, alongside lifestyle brands such as Canterbury of New Zealand, and will continue to be wholesaled to current stockists.

Peter Cowgill, executive chairman of JD Sports Fashion, said the product would not be changed. “It’s business as usual,” he said. “We’re happy with the direction [of] the brand. We’re investing in marketing, making sure the design is strong [and] customer service is top notch.” He added: “We can give costs synergies, which will be beneficial to the business.”

Scott Crowson, managing director of men’s contemporary indie Gere in Lincoln, said: “I’m glad it’s been bought because we can continue trading with it. I’m hoping it continues [as] it has been going because we’ve always done really well with it. There’s nothing else out there in that area.”

However, Stuart Gordon, owner of menswear indie Apache in Horsham, West Sussex, said Peter Werth had been “ruined” in the three years under Electra Quoted Management. He was uncertain whether it could get back on track under JD because it would have to focus on “product, quality, price and trends”.

Peter Werth has 160 UK accounts and 34 House of Fraser concessions. Pink Soda has 40 UK stockists.

Readers' comments (1)

  • I have to echo with the comments made by Apache. The management didn't understand the fundamental principles of the brand and it's relationship with independents. They would not accept any criticism and come out of this looking somewhat naive. I hope J.D know what they've taken on - they may say 'Business as Usual', but for many Peter Werth stockists it is now the case of 'What Business?'

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