Linda Bennett started with a single shoe shop in Wimbledon in 1990. Today the company has 31 stores and concessions overseas – and loyal fans that include the Duchess of Cambridge. Bennett is now non-executive director. Phoenix Equity Partners and Sirius Equity backed a reported £100m primary buyout in 2008. New store openings in America and the Middle East have boosted international sales, which have grown 40% a year from an annualised £6.2m in 2009 to £12.3m in 2011. The firm recently secured £16m of bank funding for further expansion.
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