Former La Senza owner Theo Paphitis has slammed private equity firms for their inability to get to grips with retail.
Paphitis said private equity firm Lion Capital “struggled” with the La Senza concept. La Senza collapsed into administration this week.
Kuwait-based trading group Alshaya acquired 60 stores from administrators KPMG, potentially saving 1,100 jobs.
Paphitis said investing in retail is a long-term commitment. He owns lingerie start-up Boux Avenue as well as Ryman, which has posted rising sales and profits in its most recent financial year.
“The performance at Ryman is a result of long-term decisions that have come to fruition, while some people go into retail thinking they will make quick money. This is why some private equity firms get it so badly wrong,” Paphitis said.
Paphitis bought La Senza for £1 in 1998 and sold it to Lion Capital in 2006 for £100m after a turnaround. He stayed on as chairman until 2009, when he left as a result of a disagreement with the private equity firm.