Bluegem offloads stake in Liberty London for £300m

Liberty London BlueGem
// Bluegem Capital sells its entire 40% stake in Liberty London to Glendower Capital
// The deal is worth around £300 million – much more than when Bluegem acquired it for £32m in 2010
// This means Glendower is Liberty London’s biggest shareholder and has a controlling stake in the luxury department store

Liberty London has undergone a change of hands, with private equity firm Bluegem Capital announcing it has sold off its stake in the department store in a £300 million deal.

Bluegem announced today that has successfully offloaded its controlling stake in the luxury retailer – around 40 per cent – in a secondary recapitalisation led by Glendower Capital, a global secondary private equity manager.

The remaining shares in Liberty are not part of the deal.

Bluegem first acquired Liberty in 2010 for £32 million, meaning the secondary recapitalisation announced today has delivered a massive return for the firm.

In 2010, the department store recorded sales of £63 million and an EBITDA close to zero.

Bluegem said that by 2018, Liberty’s revenues and EBITDA had grown to £166 million and £25 million respectively.

News of Bluegem putting the iconic department store up for sale first emerged in February this year.

A year prior, it appointed Adil Khan as chief executive, while Marco Capello of Bluegem stepped down from the executive chairman position and transitioned to the role of non-executive chairman.

Bluegem said Khan’s appointment was to help lead Liberty through its next phase of growth.

Glendower is a firm that spun out of Deutsche Bank’s secondaries private equity business last year.

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