John Hargreaves, 69, re-acquired this company in 2006, 21 years after he founded it. The retailer now has 217 out-of-town superstores selling discounted homewares and clothing. It also has a partner in the Middle East running seven franchised stores, and is expanding its online offering, widening its fashion range to include shoes and accessories. Under chief executive Darren Blackhurst, 46, these initiatives held sales steady at £1.1bn in 2013.
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