Frasers Group, headed by billionaire Mike Ashley and overseen by CEO Michael Murray, is continuing its expansion in the fashion industry with the recent acquisition of a stake in N Brown, the parent company of Simply Be, JD Williams, and Jacamo. Documents filed with the London Stock Exchange reveal that Frasers Group now owns 4.54% of the online business. This purchase adds to Frasers Group’s growing list of fashion brands, which already includes Studio Retail Group, Missguided, and I Saw It First.

The decision to buy a stake in N Brown comes at a challenging time for the company, as its shares have been experiencing a sharp decline due to the impact of the cost-of-living crisis on its performance. N Brown has warned that the uncertainty surrounding macroeconomic conditions continues to affect its revenues, with a decline of 9.4% in the second quarter that persisted until September. Nonetheless, N Brown’s CEO Steve Johnson remains optimistic about the company’s long-term strategy to transform the business. He sees the launch of Simply Be’s new website as an indication of the wider benefits that will be brought to all customers when it is expanded to other strategic brands.

Upon news of Frasers Group’s acquisition, N Brown’s share price initially plummeted over 17% to its lowest level since May 2020. However, it has since stabilized and currently trades at £23.68 per share. Frasers Group has yet to comment on the specific details of the N Brown stake purchase or its future plans.

Frasers Group has gained a reputation for its aggressive acquisition strategy, frequently seeking opportunities to add struggling fashion brands to its retail empire. With this latest stake purchase, the company further solidifies its presence in the online fashion market. As the fashion industry continues to navigate challenges brought on by the cost-of-living crisis and changing consumer preferences, Frasers Group remains determined to expand its portfolio and adapt to the evolving landscape.

Useful links:
1. Frasers Group Official Website
2. N Brown Official Website