Handbag brand plans more outlets
Phoenix Equity Partners has clinched a 50 per cent stake in Radley for£45 million.

The deal will enable the handbag company to continue to develop its own retail chain, reports suggest.

Radley handbags, which feature the image of a small dog, are mainly sold in department stores such as House of Fraser and Debenhams.

But the company, which opened its first store on London's Kings Road recently, plans to open more retail outlets and to diversify into other products in the UK as well as expanding into other territories such as Japan and North America.

Private equity firm Phoenix hopes the deal will enable Radley to emulate the success of its£20 million acquisition of luxury shoe brand Jimmy Choo in 2001.

After a major overhaul that involved bringing in a new chief executive and the opening of specialist retail outlets, Phoenix sold Choo for£101 million to Lion Capital in 2004.

Revenues at Radley, which is half-owned by its management team, are expected to exceed£40 million in the year to the end of April, according to reports.

Roger Best, formerly executive chairman of JD Sports, has been appointed chief executive.