Following months of discussions with potential buyers, Flying Brands has sold the assets of Gardening Direct to Jersey Choice Marketing Ltd for £2.875m.
It follows a series of sales of Flying Brands' businesses, including Flying Flowers and Flowers Direct to Interflora in February, and Garden Bird Supplies, Garden Centre Online and Listen 2 to the MBL Group in April
According to reports, Jersey Choice Marketing is associated with Jersey Plants Direct, which was founded by a former chief executive at Flying Brands - Tim Dunningham. The company currently has sales of £10m and it is hoped that the new acquisition of Gardening Direct will add a further £6m.
The latest sale leaves Flying Brands - which suffered a pre-tax loss
of £3.2m for the year ending December 30, 2011 - with its Retreat Farm freehold property, from which it operates its remaining Growing and Live Despatch (GLD) business. Along with Gardening Direct, it was revealed
that like-for-like revenue at the gardening business had dropped
by more than 30% in 2012's first quarter.
It has been reported that Flying Brands is now in discussions to lease its greenhouses and despatch centre at Retreat Farm to Jersey Choice until June 2014. If this happens, GLD will be discontinued.