Robert Dyas Group (“Robert Dyas” or “the company”) announce the sale of the company to Gladys Emmanuel Limited, a company wholly owned by Theo Paphitis, for an undisclosed sum. Mr Paphitis, famous for his appearances on BBC TV’s Dragons’ Den series, heads a retail and property empire that includes Ryman, the stationery retail chain and Boux Avenue lingerie.
Robert Dyas majority shareholders have been Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c.
and Lloyds Banking Group plc since the restructuring of the business in
2009 via a debt for equity arrangement. In January 2012 a sales process
was initiated under the aegis of Cavendish Corporate Finance.
Geoff Brady, the outgoing Chairman of Robert Dyas, commented: “I am delighted that the business has attracted an entrepreneur of
Theo’s stature: his track record for growing retail businesses is second
to none. Under his Chairmanship Ryman, which shares both the
“convenience” retail positioning of Robert Dyas and a long and
distinguished history on Britain’s high street, has gone from strength
to strength growing both organically and through acquisitions.”
“The sales process attracted a great deal of interest from potential
buyers, both from the UK and overseas, but I believe this transaction
provides significant benefits both to the Robert Dyas team and to our
customers. We will not only benefit from the expertise and experience of
Theo and his team, but will also see a considerable strengthening of
our financial position that will support the continuing development of
the Robert Dyas business.”
The sale comes against a background of robust trading from the Company
and strong cashflow. Like-for-like sales growth was 3.8 per cent in the
company's last financial year to 31 March 2012. The company’s sales
performance accelerated in the second half of that year and that
underlying strength has continued into the current year.
Theo Paphitis, who will join the Robert Dyas Board as Chairman said, “I
am very pleased with the purchase of the Robert Dyas business. It is a
business which fits well with my investment criteria and I’m looking
forward to working with the management team who have done an excellent
job in getting Robert Dyas to where it is today.”
The current Chief Executive, Graham Coles, will stay in his position
along with other members of the Robert Dyas Board. Chairman Geoff Brady
and Non-executive Director Ian Gray leave the Board. Kypros Kyprianou,
Group Chief Executive of Ryman joins the board as Director.