Monday 8th November 2021, 6pm – 9.30pm
Company Presentation – Sosandar PLC
Sosandar is an online womenswear brand, specifically targeted at a generation of women who have graduated from throwaway fashion and are looking for quality, affordable clothing with a premium, trend-led aesthetic. This is a section of the market that is currently being underserved.
Sosandar was launched in September 2016. The Sosandar business model is built around using trend-led, exclusive designs produced in-house and then manufactured using a variety of global suppliers. Sosandar caters for a growing market of fashion-conscious women, while utilising an outsourced logistics provider that can support its planned growth over the coming years.
Sosandar’s founders are Ali Hall and Julie Lavington, who previously launched and ran high street fashion magazine Look, as editor and publishing director respectively. They have a combined experience of over 35 years in the fashion industry.
Alison Hall, Co-founder and Joint CEO
Former fashion magazine editor, Alison Hall, is co-founder and joint CEO of Sosandar.
Prior to founding Sosandar in 2015, Alison was editor of Look magazine. After its launch in 2007, Alison helped it grow to become a leading fashion magazine title. Alison has been a highly influential fashion editor, and has twice been awarded the Editor of the Year (Women’s Magazines (weekly or fortnightly)) accolade by the British Society of Magazine Editors. During her tenure at Look, Alison designed successful clothing ranges for several of the UK’s top retailers.
Starting out as a reporter for regional newspapers, Alison began her magazine career at EMAP’s Slimming magazine. Recruited by Bliss magazine as deputy editor in 2001, Alison was promoted to acting editor, and six months later moved to More magazine as editor, where she successfully implemented a major relaunch of the title. Alison has also been a fashion contributor to both local and national radio and TV shows.
Julie Lavington, Co-founder and Joint CEO
Former fashion magazine publishing director, Julie Lavington, is co-founder and joint CEO of Sosandar.
In 2007, Julie launched Look magazine, a leading UK women’s fashion publication. During her tenure, Julie steered Look to have a multi-platform presence with a wide social media reach. She diversified into producing successful Look branded clothing ranges with leading UK fashion retailers. Julie was awarded the prestigious Publisher of the Year Award in 2010 by the Professional Publishers Association. From August 2014, Julie was also publishing director of UK InStyle magazine a global fashion brand published in 17 countries worldwide.
Prior to her role at Look and InStyle, Julie was publishing director of the TV portfolio at H. Bauer from 2001 to 2006, where she took TV Choice from fledgling brand to market leader. She has also held publishing roles on numerous women’s brands, including Marie Claire, after starting her career in advertising sales following a modern languages degree at Durham University. Julie is experienced in consumer research, sales and marketing, logistics and manufacturing, the development of customer-focused businesses, and in the recruitment and development of multi-disciplined teams.
Steve Dilks, CFO
Steve joined Sosandar from Regatta, the outdoor apparel business in September 2020 as Finance Director and was appointed Chief Financial Officer in May 2021 . Steve is CIMA qualified and has a broad skillset gained across a number of roles in highly complex organisations with a blend of financial, commercial and strategic experience.
During his eleven years at Regatta, the last four as Finance Director, Steve supported the Group’s consistent double-digit growth across multiple brands, countries and channels including wholesale, own retail, concessions and online. He was also the finance lead for several key strategic projects including the Group’s Brexit planning and the implementation of group wide new IT systems.
Prior to his tenure at Regatta, Steve held a broad range of financial and commercial roles in retail and FMCG organisations including Kraft Foods and The Co-Operative Group.
Company Presentation – The Property Franchise Group PLC
The Property Franchise Group PLC (AIM: TPFG) is the largest property franchisor in the UK and manages the second largest estate agency network and portfolio of lettings properties in the UK. The Company was founded in 1986 and has since grown to a diverse portfolio of nine brands operating throughout the UK, comprising longstanding high-street focused brands and a hybrid, no sale no fee agency. The Property Franchise Group’s brands are Martin & Co, EweMove, Hunters, CJ Hole, Ellis & Co, Parkers, Whitegates, Mullucks & Country Properties. Headquartered in Bournemouth, UK, the Company was listed on AIM on the London Stock Exchange in 2013.
Gareth Samples, CEO
With 30 years’ industry experience, Gareth brings a wealth of Estate Agency, Financial Services and digital marketing knowledge to the Group.
David Raggett, CFO
Since qualifying with PwC as a Charted Accountant David has spent his whole working life in franchising as franchisor and franchisee. Initially David held financial responsibility for several Ford franchises before, in the mid 90s, moving to Porsche’s UK headquarters. Here he held financial responsibility for its distribution, retails and financial services businesses at various times, as well as being their company secretary and, for several years, Head of Legal.
In 2007 David took up the role Finance Director for the Motability Scooter and Powered Wheelchair Scheme to restore its financial stability, to improve its offering and to expand its customer base. After successfully turning the scheme around and leading it into new ownership, David joined the Group in February 2013.
The Mello BASH (Buy, Avoid, Sell & Hold)
Kevin began his City career 27 years ago, training as an actuary with a focus on defined benefit pension schemes. In 1997 he moved over to Investment Banking and joined a structured finance team working on complex projects and debt finance for large corporates. During those 27 years of financial markets experience Kevin has been a keen small cap investor looking after his family’s portfolios and trading on both the long and the short side of markets. Kevin is one of the more sceptical member of our panel and likes to see proof that demonstrate management’s claims before investing in a management team.
I’m looking for compounding investments
I started off in Leisure – a part of the market I still love, but an area where stocks can appear “cheap” for years without going anywhere. It made me realise that valuation is only one part of the puzzle.
Now I sift through a much broader universe of stocks in search of small, high quality operators with large addressable markets, strong and maintainable margins, and clear share price catalysts.
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