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Online UK retailer Wiggle gets new owner

Published December 7, 2011

PORTSMOUTH, UK (BRAIN)—Online UK bike retailer Wiggle has been acquired by European private equity firm Bridgepoint for 180 million British pounds ($282.5 million).

Bridgepoint owns 33 other businesses across the financial services, business services, healthcare, consumer, industrials and media and technology segments in Europe, including Fat Face, an active lifestyle-clothing brand in the UK.

Over the past 10 years, it has completed more than 70 transactions valued at 15 billion euros, according to its website.

Wiggle, which is based in the south of England, reported sales of 55 million British pounds ($86.3 million) in 2009, and revenue of around 88 million pounds ($138.2 million) last year. Private equity owner Isis Corporation put it up for sale earlier this year for 200 million pounds.

Wiggle's online stores field more than 1 million visits a week. Over the past year, the online retailer has sold to more than 600,000 consumers, according to a release. It has seen sales and EBITDA growth of 50 percent per year in the past three years.

Wiggle's management, led by Andy Bond and Humphrey Cobbold, will remain with the business and personally invest in it as part of the deal, the statement said.

Wiggle CEO Cobbold said, "Bridgepoint is highly experienced and successful in investing in growing retail and consumer businesses, and has an extensive international network, which matches Wiggle's international strategy and growth aspirations, and will be a significant benefit to continuing the strong growth."

Wiggle sells to consumers in more than 80 countries worldwide through its sites, which are in 10 different languages and accept payment in 15 currencies.

Topics associated with this article: Mergers, Acquisitions & Investments

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