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Pure Fishing owner pays $540m for four US apparel brands


The owner of Pure Fishing, the world’s largest supplier of fishing tackle, has completed the acquisition of four major US apparel brands from the bankrupt Ascena Retail Group.

The private equity group, Sycamore Partnership, has acquired Ann Taylor, Loft, Lou & Grey and Lane Bryant for $540 million after the deal was approved earlier this month by the Virginia Eastern District Bankruptcy Court. The acquisition represents a significant expansion of Sycamore’s portfolio which, as well as Pure Fishing, includes Belk, CommerceHub, Hot Topic, MGF Sourcing, NBG Home, Staples North American Delivery, Staples United States Retail, Staples Canada, Talbots, The Limited and Torrid.

Sycamore’s MGF sourcing arm is expected to benefit by supplying the group’s expanded stable of retailers. MGF is a large, 40-year-old sourcing, manufacturing and supply chain company with over 700 associates worldwide.

“We are pleased to have completed the purchase of these four highly respected apparel brands and are excited by the opportunity to unlock their full potential as part of our portfolio,” said Stefan Kaluzny, Managing Director of Sycamore Partners.

Ascena filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in July after piling up debt through a string of acquisitions over the years and being pushed to the brink by the Coronavirus pandemic. News of the deal was revealed in November, a move that the bankruptcy court heard would save some 900 stores and thousands of jobs.

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