Nov 28, 2018
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Beales expands after management buyout

Nov 28, 2018

Beales has announced an agreement with Palmers, an historic East Anglian department store chain, to take over its two branches in a deal that puts an end to 180 years of family ownership.


Beales, which had shelved its original takeover bid for Palmers in July due to the challenging retail environment, decided to revive its plans following a management buyout led by chief executive Tony Brown last month.

Beales acquired the lease to both Palmers stores in Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft, as well as all assets including the name. The majority of front of house and back office staff are expected to remain in place, Brown told local newspapers.

“The last attempt was aborted not through Beales, we still wanted to do the deal, but our parent company at that time decided they did not want to progress the risk,” Brown told The Great Yarmouth Mercury.

“I have since bought Beales. I now own the business and the first thing I did was pick up the phone to Bruce because I am that confident in both Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft. We have come to an agreement. It is a friendly takeover.”

The deal brings the total number of stores in Beales’ portfolio to 23, expanding the chain’s vulnerability to the high street crisis at a time when other national department store chains prefer to close stores.

Debenhams, Marks & Spencer and House of Fraser are some of the big name department stores closing branches amid a continued shift towards online shopping.

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