Sir Philip Green has sold 87-year-old department chain BHS for a £1.
Investment fund Retail Acquisitions has snapped up the chain which is debt-free but made a £69.6m loss on £675.7m of sales in 2013. The chain also has a £100m pension liability.
BHS was part of billionaire Sir Philip Green’s Arcadia Group that also owns TopShop, Burton and Evans. Founded in 1928 in Brixon, the chain has over 12,000 staff and over 180 stores.
Sir Philip said in a statement: “I am pleased that we have found a buyer in Retail Acquisitions Ltd who wants to develop the BHS brand.
“Having acquired the business nearly 15 years ago in May 2000, one of my clear objectives in identifying a purchaser was ensuring their desire to take the business forward.”
Chairman of Retail Acquisitions Keith Smith said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to breathe new life into this iconic British high street brand.
“We are convinced that with strategic and focused support we will return BHS to profitability, and safeguard the workforce.”
Here are 6 vital things you need to know about BHS’ new owner Retail Acquisitions
1. Retail Acquisitions was set up last year by city banker Keith Smith. He is the former director of City finance house Nabarro Wells.
2. It was set up with the sole purpose of snapping up BHS. It is rumoured to be eyeing up more sick retailers.
3. The BBC reports that Retail Acquisition’s company directors include Formula 3000 racing driver entrepreneur Dominic Chappell, lawyer Edward Parladorio, and Lennart Henningson, a former senior advisor for HSN Nord Bank.
4. Retail Acquisitions will retain key members of BHS management but will appoint a new chairman soon.
5. According to the FT, Retail Acquisitions does not have an office or website yet. According to Companies House records, it is based at Calder & Co, an accountancy firm in the West End.
6. Retail Acquisitions was previously named Swiss Rock Ventures.