After selling her stake in the retail chain in 2018 as part of a takeover by Scottish private equity firm Inverleith, Renée Elliott has returned to help secure the future of Planet Organic.
Will Wright and Chris Pole from Interpath Advisory, who were appointed joint administrators to Planet Organic Limited on 25 April, have announced the majority parts of the business and its assets have been sold to Bioren Limited, whose shareholders include Renée and Brian Elliott who founded Planet Organic in 1995.
The deal, which will come as a relief to the natural products industry, will see ten of Planet Organic’s London stores continue to operate, saving 265 jobs, however the remaining four will close with immediate effect, with 64 redundancies.
The directors of Bioren Limited say they plan to return to the organic retailer’s vision and values, reinvigorating the business by celebrating its mission ‘To promote health in the community’.
Interpath Advisory director Gareth Slater, who led the sales process, comments: “After a competitive process, we’re delighted to have concluded this transaction which will see the Planet Organic name continue to trade and, importantly, protects a large number of jobs. We know that the new owners have exciting plans for the business, and we wish them the very best for the future and look forward to seeing the business go from strength to strength.”
Wright adds: “Planet Organic is a well-respected brand with wonderful stores and hard-working people that genuinely care about the customer experience – which is why over the years it has grown a very loyal customer base.”
The announcement follows considerable speculation about the organic retailer’s future after it hired Interpath Advisory in February to advise on ‘strategic options’ following two loss-making years and filed a notice of intention to appoint administrators in March, leading to reports of interest from Waitrose, Sainsbury’s Holland & Barrett and Redbus Ventures.
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