Royal Worcester & Spode brands go to Portmeirion

Portmeirion has bought the global intellectual property rights of Royal Worcester & Spode, which went into administration last November.

Royal Worcester & Spode brands go to Portmeirion

The £3.2m deal, which includes the remaining stock held by the US subsidiary of the company, means that the historic brands will remain in UK ownership.

Portmeirion said that ownership of the Worcester and Spode brands, and successful patterns such as Evesham, Blue Italian and Christmas Tree, would complement its own offer. Sales of the products are expected to be worth some £7m this year.

However, it will not be taking on the Jamie Oliver range of oven-to-tableware and mugs, the licence for which was recently transferred from Royal Worcester to Churchill China.

Portmeirion is based in Stoke-on-Trent and lists Botanic Garden and Sophie Conran by Portmeirion amongst its most successful tableware ranges. In 2006 it had a turnover of £28.4m. The company declined to give details of where the Royal Worcester and Spode ranges would be manufactured.

However, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP administrator Matthew Hammond said: “We are pleased to have been able to preserve the Royal Worcester and Spode brands, and their ongoing presence in Stoke, which is of vital importance to the region.

“We are continuing to trade the remaining four Royal Worcester and Spode retail outlets in the UK whilst we continue to retail our extensive remaining range of products.”

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