TM Lewin snapped up by new private equity owner

By guest author Sahar Nazir from Retail Gazette

  • TM Lewin acquired by private equity firm SCP for an undisclosed sum
  • The sale comes almost a month after TM Lewin called for bidders to make an offer

TM Lewin has been bought by London-based private equity firm SCP from from its current owner Bain Capital, via its subsidiary acquisition vehicle Torque Brands.

Caption courtesy by Retail Gazette

The vehicle was set up by SCP to “acquire a portfolio of complementary British brands into one centralised shared services platform”.

The sale was handled by corporate finance firm Alantra and comes almost a month after TM Lewin asked for bidders to put their offers forward.

At one stage, rival menswear retailer Charles Tyrwhitt was reportedly mulling a takeover of TM Lewin.

TM Lewin has been backed by Bain Capital since 2015, when the firm invested alongside the retailer’s management team to refinance the business.

In its 2020 financial year, TM Lewin had sales of over GBP 120 million.

“We wholeheartedly believe that specialist vertical-specific British brands, such as TM Lewin, will continue to hold a premier position in the eyes of the global consumer, and look forward to the challenge of helping the company adapt to the rapidly changing retail landscape,” SCP managing partner James Cox said.

The SCP team also includes the former Harrods managing director Paul Taylor and ex-Asda chief executive Allan Leighton.

Bain Capital managing director Brad Palmer said: “We have supported TM Lewin since 2015 and, together with the team, have continued to build this venerable British brand.

“Notwithstanding the challenges facing the retail sector, and most recently from Covid-19, since our ownership, the business now has a true multi-channel business in the UK across stores and online, a large and loyal customer base and an even stronger brand proposition.”

All of TM Lewin’s 66 UK stores have been closed since the government enforced a lockdown in late March.

Around 650 of the company’s 700 staff have been furloughed under the government’s coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.