Lion Capital set to sell Dutch retailer Hema

PRIVATE equity group Lion Capital said yesterday it had appointed Citigroup and RBS to explore selling retailer Hema, the second Dutch retailer to be placed up for sale this year.

Lion Capital bought Hema, a household name in the Netherlands, for an undisclosed sum in July 2007 from Dutch retail group Maxeda, and has since expanded the number of stores to 530 in five countries from 355.

The London-based private equity player said Hema has steadily grown sales since 2007, both through same-store performance and the expansion of its retail points.

“A review of the next three to five years points to significant further growth potential for the brand in both existing and new markets,” said Robert Darwent, a partner of Lion Capital.

“We believe that now may present an appropriate time for Lion to explore an exit from the business.”