1. News
August 8, 2022

Next in talks for potential acquisition of stake in Joules

Joules plans to adopt Next’s Total Platform services to support its long-term growth plans.

British lifestyle group Joules has confirmed talks with clothing and houseware chain Next for the potential sale of a minority stake.

The company has not given specific details of the negotiation, but Bloomberg reported that Next could acquire up to 25% of the London-listed retailer for around £15m.

Responding to media speculation, Joules said: “Joules confirms that it is in discussions with Next about adopting its Total Platform services to support the group’s long-term growth plans.

“Additionally, in conjunction, Joules confirms it is in discussions with Next about a potential equity investment raising proceeds for Joules of (around) £15m at no less than Joules’ current market price, which would result in Next becoming a strategic minority shareholder in the group.

“The equity investment would be subject to approval by Joules’ shareholders.

“There can be no certainty these discussions will lead to any agreement. A further announcement will be made if and when appropriate.”

If pursued, the deal would make Joules the latest high street retailer to join Next’s online platform.

Joules operates a network of around 130 stores and has more than 1,000 employees.

The company has expanded the reach of its brand via third-party relationships concessions, online marketplaces and traditional wholesale in the UK and overseas.

It serves 1.9 million active customers through its own digital platforms and retail stores in the UK, as well as exhibitions at  country shows and events.

Earlier this year, Joules said it was cautious about its near-term outlook due to ‘challenging’ trading conditions, with consumer confidence impacted by the rising cost of living in the UK.

Next recently agreed to take ownership of baby product retailer JoJo Maman Bebe alongside hedge fund Davidson Kempner.

Last March, the retailer acquired 25% of upmarket rival Reiss.