Could David Ross be the vital piece in fashion retailer Jigsaw's resurgence?

By Grimsby Telegraph | Posted: 5 Feb 2018

Grimsby’s famous son, David Ross, could emerge as a rescue investor for troubled fashion chain Jigsaw, speculation in the City suggests.

Sky News has reported that he is piecing together a deal for the high-end High Street retailer, having been in talks with Jigsaw’s founder and controlling shareholder John Robinson, a long-standing acquaintance. 

Mr Ross, who is spearheading the Greater Grimsby Town Deal with North East Lincolnshire Council and other stakeholders, was not immediately available for comment.

Jigsaw operates about 80 standalone shops and scores of concessions within fashion-led department stores. It is claimed it requires a £10 million investment. While sales were up 7 per cent in the Christmas run-in, higher import costs and foreign currency exposure led to a “cash pinch”.

Read more: Industry leading regional construction growth as energy and road projects highlighted

Launched in Brighton in 1970, new investors have been sought over recent months. 

It is understood a deal may be tied up as soon as next week. 

Mr Ross, a business and property investor who has also entered the education sphere with his eponymous academy trust, is the co-founder of Carphone Warehouse. The third generation to head up Grimsby’s Ross dynasty, he is already involved in apparel through his last remaining legacy from the Cosalt days, now known as Ballyclare. He bought it out from the administrators, as its former chairman. Renamed using its leading brand, it specialises in protective workwear for use in harsh environments, and operates out of Stockport and Barnsley. 

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