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Foschini to acquire Australian menswear chain Retail Apparel

RBR Staff Writer Published 26 May 2017

South African clothing retail firm The Foschini Group has agreed to acquire Retail Apparel Group (RAG), an Australian menswear retail chain, for A$302.5m ($226.78m) from private equity firm Navis Capital Partners and other stakeholders.

Retail Apparel has over 400 stores in Australia and New Zealand. It is the owner of Tarocash, yd., Johnny Bigg and Connor smart casual menswear brands and also the womenswear brand Rockwear.

Navis Capital had acquired a majority stake of 75% in Retail Apparel in 2011, reported The Sydney Morning Herald.

The equity firm had been looking to file an initial public offering in Australia for the clothing retail chain.

According to the publication, the remainder 25% stake held by founder Stephen Leibowitz and company managers which will also be sold to Foschini under the deal.

Retail Apparel’s new owner, Foschini has 22 retail brands in men’s and women’s apparel, sporting and outdoor apparel, jewellery and homewares. Foschini operates over 3,000 stores in Africa and in other parts of the world with plans to expand its business to Australia.

Navis Capital partners Philip Latham and Ravi Jeyaraj said: “Our objective in the RAG investment was to assist management in expanding the store network of existing brands and launch new brands, taking advantage of RAG’s strong systems and processes.

“This, coupled with management’s fine stewardship of the business, has been fundamental to RAG’s consistent and reliable growth over many years.”

As per the terms of the deal, Retail Apparel’s current CEO Gary Novis will continue in the same role along with other senior management team which has been retained.

Novis said: “We are excited to be partnering with The Foschini Group, a pre-eminent retailer in South Africa, UK and Australia, and we look forward to further expanding and enhancing our offering with their support.”

The transaction is expected to be closed in the third quarter of the year.

Image: Retail Apparel Group to be acquired by Foschini. Photo: courtesy of stockimages/Freedigitalphotos.net.