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Sun European combines Irisa and Jacques Vert businesses

Private equity owner Sun European Partners has merged the two mainstream womenswear businesses Jacques Vert and Irisa with immediate effect.

As a result of this merger, Jacques Vert chief executive Paul Allen has become chief executive of the newly-formed combined business.

The two mainstream womenswear businesses were acquired separately by private equity backer Sun European Partners towards the end of last year.

Irisa Group, formerly known as Alexon, was bought by Sun European for an undisclosed sum after it fell into administration in September. The private equity company, which today aquired the Bonmarché chain, later made a cash offer for the Jacques Vert business in December.

The appointment of Allen as the chief executive of the two businesses represents the first step in the combination of the two businesses which will incorporate both the Irisa and Jacques Vert fascias including Alexon, Kaliko, Minuet, Ann Harvey, Eastex, Jacques Vert, Planet, Windsmoor and Precis.

Jane McNally, who was previously at the helm of the Irisa Group as chief executive, will assume the role of deputy chief executive of the two businesses.

In her new role McNally takes responsibility for product, marketing and merchandising across the businesses’ 11 brands.

No further details were available at this stage regarding the combination of the two businesses, if it would be given a new name, or whether there would be any redundancies.

Earlier this month it was reported that Sun European would look to merge the back office functions of the two businesses but at the time it was not clear whether the two businesses would be fully merged.

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