Seller

Joint Venture

buyer

Rickitt Mitchell advises Xupes on their Joint Venture with Chrono24

- Growth deal

- October 2021

- Value: Undisclosed

Strategic Partnership between Xupes and Chrono 24

Helps mitigate challenges posed by Brexit

Circular economy-based luxury goods retailer

Client Background

Founded in 2009, Xupes facilitates the buying, selling or exchange of luxury pre-owned watches, handbags and jewellery from the world’s leading brands including Rolex, Omega, Tag Hauer and Cartier.
 
Earlier this year, the company featured on Channel 4’s ‘Second Hand for 50 Grand’ documentary, which followed the fortunes of Xupes to show the progression of the pre-owned market. Due to its success with viewers, Channel 4 has now confirmed additional follow-on episodes will be made about the business, set to air next year.

Rickitt Mitchell advises Xupes on their Joint Venture with Chrono24
Rickitt Mitchell advises Xupes on their Joint Venture with Chrono24

The Outcome

The new partnership will help the companies work together to mitigate some of the challenges posed by post-Brexit legislation to the pre-owned watch market. The combination of companies is set to increase the circulation of pre-owned watches in the UK, which has been isolated from EU countries due to logistical difficulties and changes in the way VAT is charged since the margin scheme was stopped as part of Britain’s post-Brexit arrangements.
 
Joe McKenzie, CEO and co-founder of Xupes, will continue to run operations of the business, now as a part-owner in the new venture. Xupes’ handbags and jewellery business will be run independently from watches by co-founder Frank McKenzie, father to Joe, Reece Morgan and Debra Willis. Meanwhile, Xupes Services will remain independent and continue under the same ownership, run by director of servicing Megan Young, with the objective of becoming the leading service centre for luxury watches in the UK.

How we added value

A wide ranging international sale process was instigated, which involved interest from private equity and trade buyers from across Europe, North America and Asia.

Rickitt Mitchell closely collaborated with  the varied Xupes stakeholders throughout the process, providing support and guidance through the complexities of a transaction of this nature.

Strong defence of deal agreed despite COVID-19’s impact on the market.

McKenzie says: “We worked closely with the Rickitt Mitchell team to enter a strategic partnership with Chrono24. This has enabled Xupes to continue to thrive within a fast-growing market and address the needs of private watch sellers in a challenging post-Brexit market, without having to compromise on our class leading customer service, product knowledge, quality or reputation. We’re incredibly excited to be a part of the Chrono24 family whose culture aligns to our own.”

Neil Mitchell, Kaine Smith and Charlotte Potts of Rickitt Mitchell provided exclusive financial advisory to Xupes on the joint venture. 

"Throughout the process amid the pandemic, Kaine, Neil and Charlotte’s advice, perseverance and dedication helped Xupes with negotiation and due diligence, assisting in the management of existing investor relationships, and generally supporting the management team on all aspects of the deal.”

- Joe McKenzie | CEO and co-founder | Xupes
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