After numerous recent acquisitions in the fashion and sports businesses, JD Sports Fashion, a major British fashion and sporting goods retailer controlled by Pentland Group, is moving into the shoe retail business by taking over Cloggs, according to Drapers. The British online shoe retailer, which trades also in France, Germany and Austria, had recently gone into administration, a form of bankruptcy.
Founded in Bimingham in 1998, Cloggs.co.uk has sold over one million pairs of shoes by more than 100 different brands over its websites in three languages. Besides its own private label, it still offers many different brands including Chinese Laundry,Clarks, Converse, Crocs, Dr. Martens, Fitflop, Hunter, Kickers, Lacoste, Superdry, Timberland and Ugg.
Before JD's move, Cloggs had raised the interest of a British online retailer, The Hut Group, which operates in the shoe market through a relatively small web shop trading as AllSole.com.
JD is reportedly planning to invest in the further development of the website and the expansion of its offerings. The current management will be retained. A co-founder of Cloggs who was acting as commercial director, Chris Thomas, became the managing director of the company at the end of last year following the departure of the former managing director, Damian Scarlett, who has set up his own e-commerce consultancy, called Jellywall.
Scarlett, took the helm of the company in 2008, Under his management, Cloggs developed websites also in Spain and Sweden, says Drapers. He also launched a higher-end Cloggs Boutique. Scarlett is understood to be currently involved in a project by the British Footwear Association to set up microsites that provide members with information on the international shoe fairs with which BFA has agreements.