It was with great regret that Henri Lloyd was put into administration last Friday. The company had experienced difficulties and sought additional financial backing for some time. A Swedish investor, the Aligro Group, recently came on board as lenders but could unfortunately not remedy the difficult financial situation.
Aligro, that already own the rights to the brand and trademarks, has now also closed a transaction with Henri Lloyd’s administrator to obtain five stores, certain stock and other assets as a stepping stone to reviving the classic British fashion label.
“I am a passionate sailor and Henri Lloyd is a brand that’s always had a special place in my heart” says Hans Eckerström, founder and manager of the Aligro Group. “Now that we get the opportunity, I’m committed to carry the heritage of the brand further and upgrade it to reach its full potential.”
In recent years Henri Lloyd has fought against challenging trading conditions on the high street. Great endeavours to secure the company’s future have been underway, including efforts to reduce cost, refinance the business and divest assets.
In March 2018 the Aligro Group agreed to acquire the Henri Lloyd brand and trademarks, with significant financial commitments to revitalize the brand. Aligro formed a new brand team headed by Magnus Liljeblad with vast experience from retail and fashion, complemented by specialists within global expansion, product design and e-commerce. The first step was to act as lenders to meet urgent financial needs and continue operations. Unfortunately, the situation continued to worsen, and filing for administration became inevitable.
Hans Eckerström, Aligro Group
Hans Eckerström is a private investor and entrepreneur. He was previously partner and employee at NC Advisory, adviser to Nordic Capital’s funds, in 2001-2016. Today he is the chairman of Nobia AB (publ), Profoto AB and a director of Thule Group AB (publ) and Nordstjernan AB.
Magnus Liljeblad will become chief executive of Aligro Group Ltd. He is an experienced manager within the sporting goods and outdoors industry.
Previous positions includes CEO of Sportmanship AB (previous distributor of Henri Lloyd in Sweden), Peak Performance AB, Stadium AB and most recently founder and CEO of Wacay.
Editor’s note: MIN is extremely pleased to read the news above that the Aligo Group is to rescue Henri Lloyd – Mr Henri built a superb empire and there can’t be many sailors who haven’t used the company’s products over the years. I’m very pleased to hear the news… Peter Nash