Star Sportwear completes MBO

Clearwater Advisor

A family-run Yorkshire sportswear company, owner of the Prostar brand, and whose socks were worn by the team which first climbed Everest has undergone a management buy-out backed by Kenmore Private Equity.

Star Sportwear, a market leader in supplying kit for amateur footballers, has been owned by the Archbell family since 1916. Brothers Richard and Paul Archbell and other family members have now sold the Wakefield-based business to a three-strong management team.

Clearwater International advised the MBO team, which is led by new managing director Doug Bedford and includes sales and marketing director Shane Bray and finance director Alastair Harries. Yorkshire Bank provided the acquisition finance and working capital facilities for the transaction.

Star, which employs 100 people and has a turnover of £11 million, sells training wear, playing kit and accessories under its Prostar brand. It is a market leader in the ‘park’ football market, comprising semi-professional and amateur teams, who typically look for high performance gear at a cost-effective price.

“We are delighted to have acquired the prestigious Prostar brand. Star Sportswear has a great history with an enviable reputation in its market and we have ambitious plans to further expand our ranges and introduce more innovative and technical features as well as extending our high quality performance sportswear to a wider sporting audience. Paul Newell and Karen Edwards of Clearwater worked extremely diligently with us and their knowledge and experience has been invaluable in helping us through this transaction. They kept us focused at all times and have motivated and guided us through the mountain of additional work that a transaction like this brings with it.”

Doug Bedford, Managing Director, Star