Leading RPC Retail team advises Comhar Capital on £10 million investment into ecommerce retailer Bazaar Group
Law firm RPC has advised private equity firm Comhar Capital on its £10 million investment in Bazaar Group, a market-leading furniture manufacturer and ecommerce retailer. Through the investment, Comhar Capital will be acquiring a majority share in the business.Headquartered and operating from Northumberland, Bazaar Group is a market-leading manufacturer and ecommerce retailer in the soft seating furniture category. The business is the category leader in this sector, having developed strong visibility across multiple channels and has built an enviable market position based on its design-led product collection and excellent customer service. Bazaar Group consistently ranks as one of the top vendors in the soft seating category on large marketplaces such as Amazon and eBay and is also growing a strong position as a key supplier to online specialist retailers such as Wayfair.
This is the fifth investment from Leeds-based Comhar Capital. Established in 2018 by Neil Armstrong and Craig Wilkinson, Comhar has been established as an independent direct capital investment business targeting SMEs run by forward-thinking, growth orientated managers. Neil and Craig will both join the board of Bazaar Group. The funding will support Bazaar Group's future market development, which is focused on international expansion, particularly new ecommerce platforms in the UK and Europe.
The corporate retail team was led by partner Jeremy Cunningham, with assistance from Nigel Collins, Ben Roberts, Ella Shanks, Ed Colville and Ela Broderick-Basar. Last year, the team also supported Comhar in its £4.25 million investment in The Lakes Distillery, a Cumbrian-based whisky distiller.
Commenting on the transaction, Jeremy Cunningham said: "We were delighted to support Comhar Capital in taking a majority stake in Bazaar Group, the market-leading furniture manufacturer and ecommerce retailer."
"With retail in our blood, this transaction, which is an important strategic investment for Comhar Capital, falls right into our sweet spot in combining corporate expertise with our market-leading experience of the retail sector. This transaction comes on the back of an extremely busy year for RPC's retail team, advising a number of well-known retail brands to support transformation and manage risks for those operating in the retail sector."
RPC's market leading retail team is a preeminent and long-standing advisor to many of the leading retailers in the world. RPC's 70+ retail team advises retailers throughout all stages of their lifecycle and has supported clients on a significant number of recent retail matters, involving well-known brands such as House of Fraser, Evans Cycles, Tiger, Globe-Trotter luxury luggage, and Jack Wills. In 2020, the team won the prestigious Luxury Deal of the Year at The Luxury Law Awards for advising Stella McCartney in her buyout of her existing joint venture arrangements with Kering and the subsequent entry into a new partnership with LVMH Moët Hennessy, and was also shortlisted for M&A Team of the Year at the Legal Week British Legal Awards 2020.
The team is part of RPC's Commercial practice, one of the leading and most comprehensive Commercial practices in the City, spanning the firm's sector focus on retail, tech, media and insurance. In the past 12 months, RPC's Commercial practice has gone from strength to strength as it continues to deliver excellent client service across the board. In what has been the busiest year for the Commercial practice to date, the team has handled high profile, sensitive and complex work for household names in the UK and globally.