Patisserie Valerie rescued by management with help from Causeway Capital: FT

Scandal-hit British cafe chain owner Patisserie Holdings has been bought out of administration by its management with help from Los Angeles-based investment management firm Causeway Capital, the Financial Times reported.

The buyers want to keep around 100 stores open, depending on the outcome of talks with landlords, the report said, citing people familiar with the situation.

Philpotts and Baker & Spice and two other brands within the group are to be sold separately.

Patisserie Valerie plunged into crisis in October after its owner uncovered accounting irregularities.

It hired KPMG in a last-ditch attempt to save the company, which traces its roots back to a shop founded 93 years ago.

Patisserie Holdings’ administrators, KPMG, declined to comment, while Causeway Capital was not immediately available to comment.

Earlier this week British retail tycoon Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct had withdrawn its offer to buy Patisserie out of administration, a source told Reuters.

Sports Direct had on Friday offered to buy out the firm to enlarge an empire stretching from department stores and sofa shops to lingerie, but wrote to Patisserie administrators KPMG saying it lacked the information required to continue bidding, British media reported on Sunday.

KPMG said on Jan.24 that 27 Patisserie Valerie stores, 25 Patisserie Valerie concessions and 19 Druckers cake shops had been closed, leading to loss of 920 jobs. The remaining 122 outlets would continue to trade, while it looked for a buyer, it had said.