We help consumer and retail companies survive and grow
We are a team of investors, operators, and entrepreneurs with extensive experience in retail, ecommerce, marketing, and turnarounds. We specialise in turning around consumer and retail companies, enabling them to survive and flourish.
What we look for
We look for companies that have strong brands, an established customer base and clear market positioning; but, due to pursuing a “growth at any cost” strategy, also have unhealthy unit economics, too many SKUs, bloated headcounts and high cash burn.
We target retail and consumer companies that are
- Mature, but underperforming
- Stressed / Distressed
- Divestments / carve-outs from larger companies
We consider multi-brand retailers, DTC brands, and brands with offline stores and wholesale distribution.
Due to the nature of turnarounds, we either align with controlling shareholder or take majority control positions in our portfolio companies.
How we do it
Our hands-on approach means we often take executive / operational roles in our companies, particularly in the stabilisation and operational improvement phases. Aside from standard turnaround processes (control cash, work with creditors, etc), for retail or consumer company we focus on the following areas.
Analyze profitability by SKU and by customer
Calculate level of sales at which the unit economics of the company return to breakeven
Higher ROAS through stronger data utilization to increase media efficiency/reduce wastage
Rationalize SKUs to increase margins and decrease overhead
Reduce headcount to reflect new, lower, level of sales
Return to growth once cash burn control has been achieved
Healthy unit economics
Lean management and disciplined HR
Increase runway, increase options
Focus on existing customers, increase loyalty through retention
Growth at any cost
Hiring for growth and bloated headcounts
Increase cash burn, lower options
Focus on new customers, thereby increasing CAC
Our areas of expertise cover the entire value chain
Our shared expertise across all areas of the digital retail value chain give us the opportunity to optimize an entire business, work with existing teams, and take brands to the next level.
CRM and Loyalty
Influencers and PR
Wholesale and Distributors
Supply Chain Mgmt
Fulfilment / 3PL
Our tech-enabled approach to growth
We execute an agile approach to grow brands in the most effective way possible.
Growing brands are in a constant struggle fighting daily fires and this generally means they are “leaving money on the table.”
With our SOPHON data intelligence platform, we have built proprietary technology that connects to the top ecommerce and marketing platforms allowing us to make smarter, better, and faster decisions.
Combining this tech with our digital retail expertise, we unlock new opportunities in growth marketing, media mix modelling, agile merchandising, financial planning and working capital cycle improvement, and supply chain management.
Who we are
Jake is a consumer private equity specialist who has led/co-led numerous investments (Growth, LBO/MBOs, Turnarounds) in the consumer space in Europe and Asia. Previously with Cassia Investments, he specializes in turnarounds, due diligence, deal structuring, building management teams and financial management. He has extensive operational, leadership and board level experience. Additionally, Jake was a partner at Lance EC, an ecommerce enablement company specializing in bringing western brands into China. More recently, Jake set up Zenudo, a marketing SaaS company that helps consumer companies grow through better use of their data, and Zen Due Diligence, a services company that helps PE/VC investors execute faster and better digital due diligence. Jake has an MBA(Finance) from The Wharton School and a BA(Hons) from the University of Oxford.
Alec is a marketing and retail leader with extensive experience building and growing digital businesses and teams for global brands, most notably for Pandora Jewellery. Working across multiple global markets, he has launched and grown D2C stores and marketplaces with high performing teams. With a focus on improving media effectiveness and brand relevancy, he has led multiple successful market entry and turnaround projects that have resulted in growth and strengthened commercial execution. Most recently, Alec was also involved in setting up Zenudo, a marketing SaaS company that helps consumer companies grow through better use of their data, and Zen Due Diligence, a services company that helps PE/VC investors execute faster and better digital due diligence.
Linford is an experienced investor and business operator. He is founder of London-based global digital creative agency Everything-Connected employing with clients including CHANEL, Standard Chartered, Universal Music, AXA, Vivienne Westwood, Formula One, INEOS and The London School of Economics. Linford is a partner at GCW Partners and sits on the board of ESG platform Ecodesk, LGBTQ+ record label Foundation FM, and advises The National Gallery board on digital and technology matters.
Isabella Mann is a commercially minded brand executive with multichannel experience in Retail, Wholesale and eCommerce. She has a strong track record in driving profitability for businesses in Europe and Asia most notably for Pandora Jewellery. She is a collaborative investor deploying her experience gained from working with businesses from seed round to IPO and beyond. Isabella is also on the Advisory Board of 'The Brilliant Breakfast', a subsidiary of The Prince's Trust.