MATCHES is part of MF Intermediate Limited and is a subsidiary of funds advised by Apax Partners. 100% of the shares of a group of six companies and the senior and subordinated debt of these companies were acquired. The purchase price was estimated at around 60 million euros. Following the announcement of the takeover, Frasers shares rose by 0.5%.
Michael Murray, Chief Executive Officer of Frasers, said: “MATCHES has always been a leader in online luxury retail and has incredible relationships with its brand partners. This acquisition will strengthen Frasers’ luxury offering, further deepening our relationships and accelerating our mission to provide consumers with access to the world’s best brands. Whilst the global luxury environment is softer, we are confident that, by leveraging our industry-leading ecosystem, we will unlock synergies and drive profitable growth for MATCHES.”
Nick Beighton, Chief Executive Officer of MATCHES, added: “Being part of Frasers, with their utter commitment to luxury, will give this business access to greater scale, best-in-class retail expertise and the financial stability it needs to more effectively deliver for our brand partners and our customers.”
The Frasers Group had its beginnings in 1982 when founder Mike Ashley opened his first sports and ski store in Maidenhead. By the end of the 1990s, there were 100 stores across the UK under the Sports Soccer name. As “Sports Direct”, the company became very present on the high street.
In 2019, the repositioning started on three pillars – premium and luxury brands were added to the sports segment – under the name Frasers Group. In the Elevation strategy, they began to rethink retail to offer customers experiences, alongside digitalization and put more focus on the product. The addition of new brand partners gives customers a high-quality selection. The Frasers Group currently includes e.g. Flannels, Evans Cycles, Everlast, Game & Belong, House of Fraser, 18Montrose, Tessuti, Lonsdale, Missguided and LA Gear.
Most recently, the takeover of the German chain SportScheck, including all its stores, was announced.
MATCHES started over 30 years ago with a store in Wimbledon and has developed into one of the world’s largest online luxury retailers. The range includes products from over 650 designers, which are delivered to 176 countries. The head office is in The Shard in London, at 5 Carlos Place they present shopping experience with digital and physical elements on several floors. In addition to the store in Wimbledon, the DNA of MATCHES, there is another store in Marylebone Village.