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Who owns the high street: The Foschini Group

Includes Phase Eight, Whistles, Damsel in a Dress, Hobbs

TFG London, the UK arm of South African lifestyle giant The Foschini Group, has been growing its portfolio of womenswear brands in recent years. In January 2015, it bought 85% of Poppy Holdco, which trades as womenswear brand Phase Eight, from private equity group Towerbrook Capital Partners at an enterprise value of £238m. The group said Phase Eight’s good track record, multichannel business and experienced management team made the retailer an attractive proposition.

TFG acquired a majority share in Whistles in 2016 and bought occasionwear brand Damsel in a Dress in February 2017, after spotting a gap in its portfolio not covered by Phase Eight or Whistles. The acquisition of Hobbs for an undisclosed sum followed in November last year. Meg Lustman, Hobbs CEO, said the sale will “make [Hobbs] go further, faster”.

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