Jones Bootmaker has changed hands less than a year after it was rescued from collapse, with competing footwear chain Pavers acquiring it through a pre-pack administration.
It comes shortly after private equity firm Endless, which bought Jones Bootmaker last March in a separate pre-pack administration, put the retailer up for sale following tough trading.
Pavers has now taken control of 42 the heritage footwear retailer’s surviving 47 stores, as well as Jones Bootmaker’s website and branding.
The five stores didn’t make the pre-pack deal will close down, as will Jones Bootmaker’s head office.
This means a total of 86 job redundancies will be made, while 389 employees will keep theirs.
“Jones Bootmaker is a well-established retailer with a strong heritage and brand,” an Endless spokesman said.
“We are pleased to have been able to save 389 jobs and ultimately transfer 42 of the 47 store estate to a strong family business and wish the business well.
“Unfortunately, we were unable to secure a sale of business that retained the head office.”
When Endless took over Jones Bootmaker last year, the footwear retailer was on the brink of collapse.
Seventy-two of Jones Bootmaker stores transferred to Endless in a pre-pack administration deal at the time, saving around 800 jobs while slashing 262 others as a result of 25 store closures.
Endless has since carried out a business review of the 160-year-old high street chain, announcing a closure of 9 stores as early as August.
Pavers, a family-run retailer which trades from about 130 shops and employs 1300 people, said now plans to “grow and develop” Jones Bootmaker so it was still distinct and separate.
“All of us at Pavers are happy to be able to secure the future of hundreds of loyal employees and welcome them into the Pavers family,” Pavers managing director Stuart Paver said.
“The Jones stores and people are a huge asset to Pavers and we look forward to developing the business, and the people, over the decades to come.
“Pavers is an independent family business, as Jones used to be, and we want to re-establish these traditional family values, returning the focus at Jones to exceptional product and friendly customer service – hallmarks of what we try so hard to achieve at Pavers.
“Our plan is to grow and develop the Jones Bootmaker brand and product as a distinct offering separate from the existing Pavers retail business. We believe the Jones brand has an exciting future and are eager to invest in this.”