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By Rebecca Keister
PBN Staff Writer
CRANSTON – Alex and Ani LLC, jewelry designer and retailer, has announced that JH Partners LLC, a private equity firm that specializes in growth capital for consumer-focused companies, has acquired a financial interest in their company.
Alexi and Ani declined to disclose the amount of the investment, saying financial terms are being kept private as part of the deal.
However, according to a press release, the investment is “believed to be one of the largest in its category this year.”
Alex and Ani has retail stores in 11 states, including Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Connecticut and New Hampshire, and its rollout plan for the remainder of 2012 and 2013 will open stores in 18 additional states.
“JH Partners’ experience in growing differentiated consumer brands and their appreciation of our vision make them the ideal partner as Alex and Ani moves to its next stage,” CEO Giovanni Feroce said in a statement. “We look forward to drawing on their expertise as we advance our brand regionally, nationally and globally.”
It’s been a busy year of growth for Alex and Ani. In July, the company announced it had purchased Sakonnet Vineyards in Little Compton for $8.45 million in a deal that was expected to be completed this month.
The same month, Alex and Ani also purchased a building on Weybosset Street in which it plans to open a professional development center and opened its Teas and Javas coffee shops line. Alex and Ani has said it expects to open six Teas and Javas locations by the end of this year.
In August, the company announced it purchased Wilson’s of Wickford’s North Kingston location, about a year after that company’s owner filed for bankruptcy.
Feroce has said that the company is following a “main street” strategy to reinvesting in Rhode Island.
The company several divisions including its Affinity Department which has licenses to co-brand with high-profile organizations including The Walt Disney Company, the U.S. Olympic Committee and Major League Baseball.
JH Partners LLC is based in San Francisco and manages approximately $1 billion in private equity commitments.