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Refined Brands acquires Turtle Doves

By Danielle Wightman-Stone


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Image: Refined Brands; Turtle Doves

Ethical fashion group Refined Brands, which includes Celtic & Co., has acquired sustainable British retailer Turtle Doves for an undisclosed sum.

The acquisition is part of Refined Brands' strategy to grow its portfolio of ethically sourced, natural and sustainable British brands, which includes sustainable knitwear, footwear and outerwear brand Celtic & Co. and ethical children’s clothing brand Frugi.

Ben Barnett, chairman at Refined Brands, said in a statement: “The creation of Refined Brands was motivated by a desire to build a differentiated family of sustainable fashion brands, alongside founders and teams that shared our passion and vision.

“Turtle Doves are pioneers in fully recycled garments and accessories, and I am delighted to welcome Graham Holbrook and his team to the group.”

Sustainable brand Turtle Doves joins Refined Brands' portfolio

Turtle Doves was founded in 2009 by Kate and Graham Holbrook and uses post-consumer textile waste including pre-loved and discarded or donated woollens to create new garments and accessories. Its key products include recycled cashmere gloves, leg and wrist warmers and upcycled garments, all manufactured locally to Turtle Doves’ head office in Shropshire.

In the last twelve months, Turtle Doves has seen demand increase due to accelerating consumer interest in sustainable fashion and achieved 4.5 million pounds in sales.

Commenting on the deal, Graham Holbrook, managing director at Turtle Doves, said: “This represents a natural step for Turtle Doves as we take our unique and sustainable proposition to international markets.

“The systems and expertise at Refined Brands will enable us to sell directly to customers around the world, and also to large retailers and online marketplaces. We will be able to employ more people in the UK, save more clothes from landfill, and deliver our award-winning service to more customers. We are already seeing the benefits from the exchange of ideas that come from like-minded businesses working together.”

Turtle Doves to collaborate with Celtic & Co.

All brands in the Refined Brands portfolio are united in their use of sustainable materials, working to a circular fashion model where products are crafted to last and exclusively use natural or recycled fabrics with a low impact on the environment.

To boost all the brands, the group is looking to introduce intra-group product collaborations. The first will launch between Celtic & Co. and Turtle Doves for spring/summer 2023. They will offer a range of recycled cashmere mule slippers, handcrafted in Cornwall using Celtic & Co.’s signature British sheepskin lining combined with a Turtle Doves recycled cashmere upper.

James Williams, group managing director at Refined Brands, added: “Combined, our brands create the leading portfolio of digitally native, British ethical fashion brands with a razor-sharp focus on natural and sustainable fabrics. As a group, we see significant opportunity to bring our pioneering brands to an ever-growing audience of ethically conscious consumers.”

Refined Brands was founded in February 2021 by Refined Capital Partners, the investment company for a group of committed retailers including Ben Barnett, former chief executive of TFG London (owner of Phase Eight, Whistles and Hobbs brands) and retail veterans Michael Rahamim and Lee Harlow. The group is funded by the team, in partnership with HSBC, Kvika Bank and Souter Investments, the family investment office of Stagecoach co-founder Sir Brian Souter.

Celtic & Co.
Refined Brands
Turtle Doves