London: British retailer Next bought the chain wellingtons to jumpers Joule in a rescue deal with founder Tom Joule, paying £34 million ($42 million) in cash to buy most of its assets from management.
The deal will keep about 100 Joules stores open while about 24 will close, of which 19 will close immediately, Next said in a statement Thursday, with a loss of 133 job out of 1,600 Joules employees.
Last month, Next, one of the Englandbiggest clothes retailers, which had joined in to buy another well-known brand due to the UK consumer downturn, acquired Made.com, but it only bought the brand, resulting in around 400 companies being redundant.
Several UK retailers are struggling as shoppers curb spending due to soaring household bills, with Joules and Made.com being the biggest names involved in management.
Next, often seen as a measure of British consumption, has managed to weather the consumer storm so far, sticking to full-year guidance in November after cutting back in September.
Under the agreement between Next and Joule, who launched the country-inspired brand known for its stripes and floral prints in 1989, Next will own 74% of the new company with Joule holding the stake. keep balance.
Joules will use Next’s technology, namely Total Platform, for its online sales, website, warehousing and distribution needs.
“We are excited to see what can be achieved through the combination of Joules’ exceptional product, marketing and branding skills with NEXT’s Total Platform infrastructure,” said CEO. Next Simon Wolfson said in the statement.
Before Joules collapsed, it held talks with Next about a possible investment, but discussions fell through in September. Next said its plans to keep opening 100 stores had to abide by the terms agreed with the landlord. The company also said it paid £7m for Joules’ headquarters and that the chain would retain “managerative autonomy and creative independence”.