Jaeger was one of the few bright spots in an update today from veteran venture capitalist Jon Moulton’s Better Capital.
The fashion group “enjoyed a strong Christmas trade”, with sales up 20 per cent in the final 13 weeks of last year. Margins fell 4.4 per cent below budget because of heavier sales discounting. It will make a loss again for 2013 but materially less than the £4.4 million it lost in 2012.
Better Capital warned two weeks ago that two of the largest investments in its 2009 portfolio would suffer big write-downs on their valuation at the end of March.
Today its confirmed that those businesses were the aerospace engineer Gardner, which it bought in 2010, and office supplies group Spicers which it bought in 2011.
Moulton said there had been recent appointments to the operating side of the fund manager including turnaround expert Thierry Bouzac. He also confirmed Readers Digest had been sold for a token £1.