Pembroke-based fancy dress business receives £250,000 loan from Finance Wales

Pembroke-based fancy dress business receives £250,000 loan from Finance Wales

From colourful full-body spandex suits and inflatable cows to foam pizza outfits and rideable gnomes, the Bodysocks craze continues to grow and the company is on track to increase turnover to £2.6 million by 2019.

Established in 2011 by the then 17-year-old Jack Lear, Bodysocks now sells over 50,000 fancy dress costumes for children and adults to more than 70 countries each year.

The business is operated digitally, with 95% of all sales coming through online channels that are direct to the consumer. And the business exports over 75% of all sales.

Now, the company has accessed a £250,000 loan from Finance Wales which will be used to fund further growth with the purchase of additional stock to fulfill growing international demand. 

Advised by Ashmole & Co Accountants, Bodysocks is the trading name of JLI Trading Limited.

Managing Director Jack Lear says: “We’ve come a long way since our early days selling fancy dress items on ebay. Our costumes have been featured on BBC2's programme Never Mind the Buzzcocks and were even used during the opening ceremony of the 2012 London Olympic games.”

He continued: “Over the last six years, despite reinvesting all profits back into the business, I felt we were not fulfilling our potential. Knowing that we were missing out on sales because we did not have enough stock was disappointing and frustrating. Obtaining additional funding was therefore crucial in order to expand more rapidly, but raising finance was a new challenge.”

Finance Wales is one of the UK’s largest regional SME investment companies and aims to provide growth capital for small and medium-sized businesses. With over £700 million in funds, they make commercial investments throughout Wales, helping businesses to develop and grow.

The £250,000 investment in Bodysocks is the latest deal for Richard Easton of Finance Wales. Based in Llanelli, he works with SMEs throughout West Wales structuring debt, mezzanine and equity investments ranging from £100,000 to £3 million.

He says: “Jack is a young entrepreneur with huge potential. He has built a very profitable business with a strong turnover and huge potential for further growth both here in the UK and globally.”

“With our support, he now has the right funding in place to invest in stock and manage cash flow. We wish him every success.”

Published: 10 August 2017

Article by Chris Middleton
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