Silverfleet Capital Sells Office Chain To Truworths For $385 Million

Silverfleet Capital, the European private equity firm said Monday it has agreed to sell Office, the British fashion footwear retail chain, for 256 million pounds, or $385 million, to Truworths International, a South African fashion retailer.

The transaction is expected to close early next month, and is subject to approval by the South African Reserve Bank. Truworths is listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange.

Silverfleet invested in Office in Dec., 2010 and said that over the last five years it has worked with the management team to establish the company as a leading fashion footwear retailer.

Under Silverfleet’s ownership, Office built up its e-commerce offer, expanded its retail outlets from 75 to 115 standalone stores in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland, including six units in Germany.

It also increased the number of concessions to 47, based at Selfridges, Topshop, Topman and House of Fraser.

Office was founded in 1981 and is headquartered in London. Total sales in the financial year to January 2015 were 270 million pounds, or $406 million, with online sales accounting for 20 percent of the overall figure.

Gareth Whiley, partner at Silverfleet Capital, said the company was happy with its “successful investment, achieving a 3.4x return, and we wish the team every success in the future.”

Silverfleet has also recently invested in the Danish women’s wear clothing brand, Masai Clothing Company, and also owns La Fée Maraboutée, a French wholesaler and retailer of women’s fashion, and Creatrade, a German multi-channel retailer.

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