Swaine Group Limited’s Acquisition of The Cambridge Satchel Company Limited

Edwin Coe advised Swaine Group Limited – a subsidiary of the Chargeurs group – on its acquisition of The Cambridge Satchel Company Limited.

A French textile company, Swaine Group’s aim in the merger is to extend the reach of its British-made luxury leather goods division, which is seeing fast growth. Cambridge Satchel Company was set up in 2008 by founder Julie Deane CBE and has a factory in Leicester.  The company grew quickly and fans of the brand included Taylor Swift and Lady Gaga.

The Edwin Coe team comprised corporate partner Alexandre Terrasse, property partner Joanne McIvor, employment partner Ruth Hickling and intellectual property and IT Partner Nick Phillips.

 

Alexandre Terrasse, Edwin Coe LLP:

Can you tell us more about the role you played during the acquisition?

Led by Alexandre Terrasse, the French M&A team of Edwin Coe assisted Swaine Group Limited (an entity of the French luxury textiles group Chargeurs) in the acquisition of The Cambridge Satchel Company Limited, to extend its fast-growing British-made luxury leather goods division. Our involvement started at the negotiation stage until completion of the transaction.

Did you encounter any challenges over the course of the transaction? If so, how did you overcome them?

Like in all transactions, there are complications and deadlines that need to be met. In this case, both parties were willing to progress the matter within a very short time window. As a result, our team had to undertake a due diligence review in record time whilst ensuring that the documentation was in agreed form within the imposed timeframe.

What impact do you expect this deal will have on the luxury goods sector in the UK?

Prior to the acquisition, the Cambridge Satchel Company was already a well-established brand in the luggage industry in the UK. With the Swaine Group at its head, it is expected that the brand will benefit from the expertise, the knowledge and the financial strength of a large group capable of growing the company and its business even further.

Alexandre has been assisting French investors for over 20 years. He believes that the UK is experiencing high inflation, low investment confidence and a weaker currency, making it an attractive moment for European suitors to pounce on struggling British assets.  There is, for the moment, a global recognition that businesses in the UK are very attractive financially so it is an ideal time for foreign investors to make the most of the Brexit discount and pound.

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