Sixth Scottish investment for Business Growth Fund

Luxury toiletries manufacturer Arran Aromatics has become the third August investment for the Business Growth Fund.

Luxury toiletries manufacturer Arran Aromatics has become the third August investment for the Business Growth Fund.

Having been saved from administration back in 2009, toiletries brand Arran Aromatics has secured the equity capital it needs to peruse sustainable growth.

The £2.8 million deal has been led by the bank-backed Business Growth Fund (BGF) and also includes the appointment of a new chairman – Alastair Kerr.

Kerr has non-executive roles at White Stuff, Fuller Smith & Turner on his CV and also has industry experience having served as head of Body Shop’s European, Middle East and African set-up.

Based on the Isle of Arran in Scotland, the Arran Aromatics business was set up in 1988 by Janet and Iain Russell.

According to a statement, Arran Aromatics is one of the few remaining toiletries companies in Britain to control each aspect of its products lifecycle.

Iain Pittman, current chairman of Arran Aromatics and responsible for the turnaround of the cosmetics business from administration, says that there is now a new confidence in the company.

‘BGF’s growth capital investment will go towards brand development, upgrading our IT infrastructure, investing in retail estate and allow for a significant investment in our e-commerce capabilities to drive our online business,’ he adds.

‘The company has enjoyed fantastic support from Highland & Islands Enterprise, Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Development International over the past year.’

Arran Aromatics is currently one of Scotland’s largest exporters to Saudi Arabia and has plans in place to open four new stores to go with its ten existing sites.

The deal is the third that the BGF has made in August following new commitments into gym business Xercise4Less and CMS platform Abacus e-Media. The £2.5 billion fund has also supported the acquisition efforts of portfolio company York Mailing.

Duncan Macrae, investment director at BGF and new board member of Arran Aromatics, comments, ‘The company’s heritage, quality product offering and strong work ethic have created a very attractive investment proposition for BGF.

‘The brand has broad consumer and trade appeal with extensive international opportunities and with appropriate investment and support, the company can maximise its inherent potential.

Read up on our exclusive Business Growth Fund roundtable:

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter was the Editor for from 2012 to 2014, before moving on to Caspian Media Ltd to be Editor of Real Business.