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3i sells Republic to Change Capital

3i has sold its minority stake in Republic as part of a £105m deal. Change Capital will become the majority shareholder in Republic. 3i’s proceeds represent a money multiple of 2.2x and an IRR of 80%.

Republic, which currently operates 76 stores throughout the UK, sells brands such as G-star, Replay, Bench and Hooch as well as its own exclusive ranges.

3i invested £15m of equity and debt in February 2004 and has actively supported the company over the past 20 months. Through its network of contacts, 3i introduced Richard Tonks as chairman and helped Republic strengthen its second tier management team.

Since 2004, Republic has performed strongly, opening more than 35 new stores and almost doubling profits despite a difficult retail climate.

Phil Greves, 3i investment director, commented: “Republic has been a very successful investment for us. 3i invests in talented, ambitious management and works in partnership with them to build value. Republic is a great example of this.”