Company will use proceeds to reduce bank debts
The Early Learning Centre (ELC) is set to return to the high street after its struggling owner Mothercare struck a deal to sell the toy brand to rival chain The Entertainer.
Mothercare chief executive, Mark Newton-Jones, said the brand did not have the three to five million required to develop new ELC products each year: “It is a brilliant brand and we simply don’t have the resources to nurture it.”
The company is to use the £13.5m proceeds from the sale to reduce its £21.5m of bank debt. It is also handing over the running of its toy departments to The Entertainer.
Gary Grant, founder and executive chairman of The Entertainer, said “The heritage of the brand is very deep. Its toys are known for their quality and educational background and the play value that is such an important part of growing up. This is a fantastic opportunity for both companies.”