Blooming Marvellous bought out of admi­nis­tra­tion

MATERNITY wear chain Blooming Marvellous has been bought out of admi­nis­tra­ti­on by a consortium including Elaine McPherson, the owner of retailers Ethel Austin and Au Naturale, and Mike Basso, boss of Salford-based importer PanWorld Brands.

Blooming Marvellous went into admi­nis­tra­ti­on last month, and the duo, along with Jim McDowell, made the highest offer. The amount they have paid is undisclosed.

The business, launched in 1983, grew from being a small mail order operation into a group with 15 stores, including one in Manchester's Royal Exchange Arcade, catalogue and internet sales. It turns over around £12m.

Joint admi­nis­tra­tor Philip Duffy, of insolvency and turnaround specialist MCR, said: "This is a good result for the business, allowing the Blooming Marvellous brand to maintain its presence in the high street and online, while also saving jobs."

Mr Basso said: "I've admired the business for some time and it is great to get the chance to acquire it and restore its reputation for great product, value and service."

Mr McDowell said the trio aimed to grow the business and return it to profita­bili­ty.

Elaine McPherson said: "This is a great opportunity to acquire what is still, despite recent trading dif­fi­cul­ti­es, a strong and well recognised brand. The new management team have huge experirence in retail, direct and product sourcing, and we intend to work with the existing staff to ensure that Blooming Marvellous returns to being a market leader in the sector."

Keith Kennedy led a team at Manchester law firm  Berg Legal who advised the admi­nis­tra­tors on the sale.

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