Womenswear brand Acai Outdoorwear has secured 3 million pound investment from consumer-focused investment firm Growth Partner, which is backed by HomeServe plc founder and chief executive Richard Harpin.
Growth Partner has taken a minority stake in the outdoorwear brand founded by fashion designer and entrepreneur Kasia Bromley and her husband Joe in 2016 to help accelerate Acai’s growth plans in the UK and internationally.
As part of the deal, Acai’s previous investors DSW Ventures will be stepping away, having supported the business since October 2019. In addition, James Worrall, investment director at Growth Partner will join Acai’s board as a non-executive director.
The brand has experienced exceptional growth, doubling revenue each year since launch and growing its staff base from 4 to 25 people over the last three years. Investment into Acai’s management team has also been a focus, with Joe Bromley stepping down as chief executive and replaced by Richard Leedham, ex-Berghaus chief executive and Pentland Group executive board member to lead the next phase of growth.
The latest round of investment will support the acceleration of “strategic opportunities” for the business to grow internationally, launch new products and expand from the direct-to-consumer channel.
Acai also noted that it will leverage Growth Partner’s investment and Richard Harpin’s strategic insight, expertise in international expansion and scaling multi-channel consumer businesses, to embark on its "next stage of exciting growth".
Acai Outdoorwear looks to accelerate international growth plans with investment from Growth Partner
Kasia Bromley, creative director at Acai, said in a statement: “My mission is to inspire more women to get outdoors to enjoy nature for their mental and physical wellbeing. Women deserve outdoor clothing which makes them feel great and performs to enhance their confidence.
“This investment will support Acai to reach many more women. I am delighted to be partnering with Richard, James, and the Growth Partner team to accelerate Acai’s growth.”
Worrall added: “Acai operates in the outdoorwear market which has experienced significant growth but is yet to be disrupted by a direct-to-consumer challenger brand. Acai’s products being functional and technical in nature whilst being stylish and flattering to the female form are revolutionising the outdoorwear market.
“Acai has successfully created a community of highly engaged brand advocates where Acai is more than a product, it is a brand that is empowering women to be active outdoors. We’re extremely excited to be partnering with Kasia, Joe and the team to support them as they introduce the brand to more customers across international markets and via new sales channels.”
Acai offers products tailored for women that are evergreen, sustainable, and timeless outdoor styles built to last whilst having technical characteristics such as being water resistant and thermal. Initially famed for its signature skinny outdoor trousers, Acai has expanded its offering to include outdoor leggings, tops, and accessories and recently launched its first jacket, hoodies, and mid-layers.