Inflexion invests in Natural Products Worldwide

Experienced Chairman appointed

Inflexion Private Equity, the mid-market private equity investor, today announces that it has completed the buyout of Natural Products Worldwide (“NPW”), the market leading impulse giftware products company.

NPW designs, sources and sells giftware products to retailers in the UK, Europe and North America. It is the market leading business in the niche of impulse gifting. NPW supplies a wide range of gifts, toiletries and “till pick” items, focusing on fast moving consumables such as lip-balms, tissues and body care sets, as well as stationery and gadgets. NPW is also the UK’s non-bookstore distributor of Moleskine notebooks.

NPW serves a broad range of quality high street retailers and independent gifting stores. Its largest UK clients include John Lewis, New Look and WH Smith’s, with the largest American clients being Old Navy, Restoration Hardware and Urban Outfitters.

As part of the buyout, Mark Smith, founder and former CEO of Claire’s Accessories in Europe, will join the NPW board as Chairman. Mark brings a wealth of experience together with a wide network in pan–European retailing. NPW’s two founders, Michael Sweeney and Jonathan Pooley, set up the business in 1992. They will stay with the business post-transaction and continue to focus on developing product design and range.

The business is enjoying strong growth in the UK and North America through its focus on developing partnerships with retailers to help them maximize their incremental revenue streams from gifting and has significant opportunities for further expansion overseas.

John Hartz, Managing Partner of Inflexion Private Equity, commented: “NPW is a classic Inflexion investment; not only is it a market leading business but it is also enjoying strong growth. We are backing the existing management team to further develop the business both in the UK and internationally.”

Michael Sweeney, Co-Founder of NPW, commented: “We are delighted that Inflexion is investing in the next stage of growth for NPW. With their proven track record of working with businesses to grow both domestically and internationally, as well as their experience in the retail sector, we feel they are the right partner for our business and we look forward to working together.”

Inflexion Private Equity is also an investor in Jack Wills and Ideal Shopping Direct.

Andrew Leek, Malcolm Coffin and Philip Edmans led the transaction at Inflexion. John Hartz and Andrew Leek will join the board as Non Executive Directors.

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