HSBC’s Midlands leveraged finance team has played a key role in Permira Funds’ £300 million acquisition of iconic footwear brand Dr. Martens.
The global bank, which has supported R Griggs Group, the owner of the Dr Martens brand, since it was founded by the family in 1901, acted as mandated lead arranger on the deal. It was led on behalf of HSBC by Birmingham-based Graham Young, the head of the Midlands leveraged finance team.
The Northamptonshire-based Griggs family, who have been making shoes since 1901, will retain control of around 20 per cent of the business.
Dr Martens employs 700 people worldwide including 350 in the UK, and its products are sold in 63 countries. The deal, expected to complete in January, will see Permira, which also owns the Hugo Boss and New Look brands, take control of the brand’s parent company.
Mr Young said: “We are delighted to support Permira Funds, in this buyout and their desire to back the entrepreneurial management team to continue to build and grow the business and develop the Dr Martens brand as they have done in recent years.
“Dr Martens is an attractive proposition both as an investment opportunity and from a debt financing perspective.”
Last year the brand, once associated with punks and skinheads and popular with rockers like The Who’s Pete Townsend, made £15.3 million pre-tax profits on revenues of £110 million. Cheryl Potter, partner and head of the consumer sector team at Permira, said: “Dr Martens is an iconic brand with a passionate fan base.”