GP Bullhound

GP Bullhound advises MyOptique Group on expansion funding

Press Release   •   Dec 16, 2013 12:56 CET

GP Bullhound, the technology investment bank, acted as the exclusive financial advisor to MyOptique Group, Europe's leading online optical retailer selling prescription glasses (Glasses Direct, MyOptique), sunglasses (Sunglasses Shop) and contact lenses (LensOn).

The Group secured £8 million in investment and appointed a new Chairman to bolster its aggressive international expansion plans. The round was led by existing investors Acton Capital Partners, Highland Capital Partners and Index Ventures, who were joined by new investors Cipio Partners and GP Bullhound Sidecar, and will be used to fund both further growth and potential acquisitions.

The MyOptique Group includes several market-leading sites in the online optical market and was rebranded from Prescription Eyewear Ltd earlier this year to reflect that it is now a full service optical provider across all key categories. Launched originally in 2005 as Glasses Direct, which offers a high service, excellent value proposition for prescription glasses, it acquired Sunglasses Shop, Europe's largest premium online sunglasses retailer, in 2011. A year later the group launched MyOptique.com, a highly curated premium optical boutique, and also acquired LensOn AB, the leading online contact lenses retailer in Northern Europe. The company has also developed two leading eyewear brands, London Retro and Scout, which are the fastest growing brands on Glasses Direct and which will be further developed as part of the expansion plans.

Kevin Cornils, CEO at MyOptique Group commented: “We are delighted to see the support of our existing and new investors, and thrilled to have Maurice Helfgott joining us as Chairman to bring his wealth of experience in fashion retailing as well as public company experience as we accelerate our growth efforts. GP Bullhound played a critical role in the fundraising and their sector expertise and pan European network were important to the success of the round”.

This represents the completion of GP Bullhound's 18th transaction in 2013 and further highlights our commitment to supporting category leaders. GP Bullhound's Sidecar Fund was also an investor in MyOptique Group.

Enquiries

For enquiries contact Manish Madhvani, Managing Partner, manish.madhvani@gpbullhound.com

GP Bullhound

GP Bullhound is an international technology investment banking group with offices in London, San Francisco, Stockholm and Berlin. Founded in 1999, GP Bullhound provides world-class advice on mergers, acquisitions and private placements to a diverse range of corporate clients, institutional investors and high net worth individuals.

Combining a true love for entrepreneurship and innovation with deep global buyer relations and sector expertise, GP Bullhound has completed transactions for many category leaders, most recently selling Pure360 to SEP, Tunigo to Spotify, and Fjord to Accenture. For more information, please visit www.gpbullhound.com

In 2013, GP Bullhound was awarded Boutique Investment Bank of the Year and Leading Advisers of the Year by the Acquisition International M&A Awards, and Manish Madhvani, a Founding Partner of GP Bullhound was named as a winner of the fourth annual M&A Advisor 40 Under 40 Award.

MyOptique Group

MyOptique Group is revolutionising the £20bn European optical industry by cutting out the high street middle man – and providing its customers with a superior service and significant savings. The group is the clear European leader in the growing online optical segment with a full offering covering all three major segments in the eyewear market (prescription glasses with Glasses Direct and MyOptique, sunglasses with Sunglasses Shop and contact lenses with Lens On) and currently ships over 2,000 orders a day. For more information, please visit http://myoptiquegroup.com


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