// Jack Wills founder Peter Williams to relaunch Aubin with the help of Next
// Aubin was founded in 2008 and had 12 stores before it was shelved so Williams could focus on Jack Wills’ growth
// Next has taken a 33% stake in Aubin and will run the brand’s website and logistics through its Total Platform service
Jack Wills founder Peter Williams is set to make a comeback to fashion retail through a partnership with high street giant Next.
According to The Sunday Times, Williams is preparing to relaunch menswear brand and retailer Aubin, an offshoot of Jack Wills, next month.
Next is reportedly taking a 33 per cent stake in Aubin and will run the brand’s website and logistics through its Total Platform service.
Williams first launched Aubin and Wills in 2008 and went on to open 12 stores.
However, the fascia was temporarily suspended so Williams could focus on expanding Jack Wills, which he co-founded in 1999.
Aubin is set to open its new store in Soho from September and will also sell directly to consumers online.
Williams was ousted from Jack Wills in mid-2018 following a row with its then-private equity owner BlueGem.
Shortly after, the fashion retailer fell into administration and was rescued by the Mike Ashley-owned Frasers Group in a £12.75 million pre-pack deal.
Next’s stake in Aubin is the latest in a growing list of third-party partnerships that the fashion retail giant has been making in recent months.
Last year it took a majority stake in a joint venture with L Brands so it could operate Victoria’s Secret’s UK stores and ecommerce operations.
It also runs Laura Ashley’s online business and Next boss Lord Simon Wolfson chairs the board of fashion retailer Reiss – in which Next also has a 25 per cent stake.