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Revamp planned for The Works
03.07.08 | Graeme Neill
Discount chain The Works is to revamp its stock offering after retail entrepreneur Anthony Solomon acquired a 50% stake in the business from private equity firm Endless.
The Works was rescued from administration by Endless in May; the private equity firm then installed Anthony Skitt, former head of internet retailer Choices UK, as its chief executive. Skitt has now left the company along with chairman Alan Smith.
Solomon, who previously headed up discount chain the Original Factory Shop, is the business’ new chairman and chief executive. Former colleague David Luper has been hired as buying director.
Ian Brown, portfolio director at Endless, said there were no immediate plans to sell Endless’ remaining stake of approximately 50% in The Works.
“The plan is to turn the business around and when Anthony does so we will probably both exit it at the same time,” he said. “I believe that the business should be restored to what it once was, and that’s an excellent place to buy books at an excellent price as well as having a good reputation for stocking arts and crafts.”
Among Solomon and Endless’ first plans for the business is to revamp the stock. “At the moment we are trying to get good stock going through the business and make it a more attractive and interesting prospect for customers,” said Brown. “We need to get better footfall for the business and we will do that by getting in better product and displaying it well.”