Frasers Group, the retail conglomerate led by CEO Michael Murray and owned by billionaire Mike Ashley, has boosted its stake in online fashion retailer N Brown to 5.04%, according to recent filings with the London Stock Exchange. This move follows Frasers Group’s initial investment in N Brown last month, when it acquired a 4.54% stake in the company. N Brown, which owns popular brands like Simply Be, JD Williams, and Jacamo, has been grappling with the impact of the ongoing cost-of-living crisis, resulting in a significant drop in its share price.

N Brown has expressed concern about the continuing uncertainties in the macroeconomic landscape and its negative impact on the company’s performance. It reported a decline of 9.4% in product revenue during the second quarter, a trend that continued into September. The company’s revenue for the first six months of the financial year ending August 27 also experienced a year-on-year decrease of 4.6%, amounting to £331.5 million. In addition, N Brown saw its statutory pre-tax profits plummet from £28.4 million to £7.2 million.

Frasers Group, known for its aggressive acquisition and expansion strategies, is constantly on the lookout for opportunities to grow its retail empire. The company already owns prominent brands in the industry, including luxury fashion hub Flannels and sportswear giant Sports Direct. In recent months, Frasers Group has expanded its portfolio by acquiring Studio Retail Group, Missguided, and I Saw It First. The company made headlines last month for increasing its investment in German fashion house Hugo Boss, bringing its total stake in the company to 32.8%. Frasers Group also acquired a 5.1% stake in ASOS in October. However, the company has clarified that these investments are part of a long-term plan to establish relationships and partnerships with other retailers, suppliers, and brands.

As for N Brown, Frasers Group has not yet commented on its increased stake purchase or its intentions for the company. As Frasers Group continues to strengthen its presence in the fashion retail industry, it will be interesting to see how this increased stake in N Brown aligns with its overall strategy and future plans.

Useful links:
London Stock Exchange
Frasers Group official website