Foresight Group (Foresight) has made a GBP1 million investment into Nottingham-based Alpkit Limited (Alpkit) on behalf of the Foresight Nottingham Fund, alongside bank funding provided by HSBC.
Alpkit is a fast-growing designer and retailer of outdoor clothing and equipment. Targeting the outdoor adventure enthusiast, Alpkit provides high quality clothing and equipment at an affordable price and offers over 500 lines across clothing, equipment and bikes. All products are designed at the Company’s HQ in Newthorpe, Nottingham, with a focus on technical performance, providing their customers with “gear that costs less but works harder.”
Alpkit was founded in 2004 by a group of friends who loved outdoor adventure, including the current Managing Director, Nick Smith. David Hanney joined the business as CEO in 2014 and under his management, the business has grown tenfold in the last four years.
The GBP1.0m investment into Alpkit will be used to support further growth. Alpkit plans to use funds to invest in its website to both improve customer experience and to create international language sites to increase sales from its growing global online traffic. The investment will also support the opening of new stores in selected locations throughout the UK.
Over the last two years Alpkit has opened its first two stores, strategically located in the Lake District and Peak District, to help increase brand awareness. As well as selling Alpkit’s products, the Company’s expert staff in the stores provide advice, product repairs and run adventure courses. In the last four years, staff numbers have grown from 12 to 62 and over the next three years, Alpkit aims to create a further 40 jobs.
The investment was led by Foresight’s Nottingham office, which received advice from Browne Jacobson and Mazars. The Company were advised by Austin Moore Law and BHP Corporate Finance.
Ben Dawson, Senior Investment Manager, Foresight, says: “Alpkit is a fast-growing and high-profile Nottingham-based business with a strong management team that has good sector experience. We look forward to working with David, Nick and the team to continue Alpkit’s successful growth.”
David Hanney, CEO at Alpkit, says: “We are delighted to partner with Foresight Group and secure investment from the Foresight Nottingham Fund. The team is well-known in the Nottinghamshire region and has a strong track record of supporting businesses across a range of sectors. With two flagship stores opened this year and a quarter of a million customers across our stores and e-commerce business, Alpkit is set for further growth over the next few years and beyond.”
Don Gray, Partner at BHP Corporate Finance, says: “We are delighted to have worked with Alpkit on this exciting phase in its growth plan. With the support of new funding partners, Alpkit is now ideally placed to bring its unique brand and passion for all things outdoors to new customers across the UK and beyond. We wish the team every success and look forward to continuing to work with them on the next stage of their journey.”