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Pumpkin Patch to Re-Launch in Australia and NZ

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By Published On: October 25, 20180 Comments

After being acquired by Catch Group in 2017, Pumpkin Patch has changed hands again, with a private equity business taking the reigns of the almost 30 year-old business.

Alceon Group has officially acquired Pumpkin Patch’s remaining stock and intellectual property from former owner, Catch Group, in a deal that finalised earlier this month.
According to a statement issued by Alceon, the investment firm is planning to revive the much-loved children’s brand in both Australia and New Zealand, with a new cross-channel strategy.
“The Pumpkin Patch brand has strong recognition in both Australia and New Zealand and its products are highly respected in the children’s wear markets,” said Richard Facioni, the executive director of Alceon.
“Pumpkin Patch will complement our existing retail portfolio and, through leveraging the resources of our EziBuy business, we are confident we can successfully re-launch and re-build this iconic brand.”
The company reportedly plans to re-launch the brand in New Zealand first, integrating Pumpkin Patch into EziBuy’s online and physical stores at the end of this month. A full re-launch of the brand is expected to commence in July 2019 in the ANZ region, but while Alceon would like to eventually re-open stand-alone Pumpkin Patch stores, there are no plans presently in place to market the children’s label as an independent retailer.
Pumpkin Patch originally closed its online and bricks-and-mortar stores in February 2017, after receivers failed to find a buyer for the embattled children’s wear retailer. The company owed its lender, ANZ Bank New Zealand, $NZ59.5 million when it went into receivership in 2016 after it posted a loss of $NZ15.5 million at the end of FY16.
Within a month of Pumpkin Patch closing its doors, Catch Group announced its acquisition of the brand and its intellectual property assets.
At the time, Catch Group’s CEO, Nati Harpaz said the brand’s closure represented an opportunity for the online marketplace.
“Every time we hear that a retailer is closing, we look at it from an angle of lost opportunities, because we (Catch Group) love to buy clearance stock. But when Pumpkin Patch came along, we looked at it from an IP and brand point of view, as well as the database that comes with it, and we were really keen to do a deal there.”
“Strategically this deal supports our renewed vision to grow the number of premium brands on offer and achieve scale by expanding into new categories and growing customer numbers,” Harpaz said.
“We think that with our platform, we can bring it (Pumpkin Patch) back to market and make it really successful. It also helps us build a competitive advantage that other retailers and their marketplaces have exclusively, like eBay and Amazon, by having exclusive brands that are only available through us.”
Catch held onto Pumpkin Patch’s intellectual property rights for just over 18-months before surrendering the “successful” brand to Alceon Group. Given Catch’s short, arguably unsuccessful stint with the Pumpkin Patch brand, spectators are keen to see if Alceon can realise its bold plans for the already twice disposed of company.
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