Home shopping group N Brown Group is understood to be running a slide rule over Isle of Wight-based home shopping business Scala Collections as it looks to grow its offer.
Scala Collections was bought in a management buyout backed by Barclays Private Equity in December 2006 for £28m. Scala trades as two home shopping brands, Artigiano and Spirito di Artigiano, both selling Italian-designed women’s clothes.
Spirito sells plus-size clothing, in which N Brown specialises.
In the 19 weeks to January 9 N Brown’s total group revenue grew 4.9%. Like-for-like sales increased 3.6% for the period, excluding revenue from its new German business and outsized men’s retailer High and Mighty, which it acquired in September. At the time it said it would continue to look for organic growth opportunities.
Its other newer brands, including womenswear offer Marisota and menswear brand Jacamo, were cited as the fastest growing of all its brands.
Scala Collections sales were £17.9m in the year to January 31, 2008, down from £18.3m the year before. Pre-tax profits also fell for the period to £1.3m from £1.9m, which, in its last filed accounts, it put down to trade suffering from postal strikes.
N Brown and Scala declined to comment.
Separately N Brown has promoted Linda Quinn and Joe Fogwill to trading director roles. Quinn will be in charge of all ladies fashion while Fogwill will take over home and gifts categories. They will both report to Paul Short, who heads up merchandising for the group.
N Brown chief executive Alan White said the changes in the structure of the buying teams had come as the retailer expanded. “We now need individuals looking after each category,” he said.