Celtic & Co

Exited in 2014

Celtic & Co is a direct to consumer clothing company that provides uniquely designed, natural and handcrafted clothes for women.

The business was founded over 20 years ago in Newquay, Cornwall, when husband and wife owners Nick and Kath Whitworth began selling sheepskin boots that were the original British Uggs. Eventually the couple sold the UK trademark to Uggs’s American owners and re-branded the company as Celtic Sheepskin designing and manufacturing its own unique sheepskin boots.

Over the years, Celtic has developed a range of outerwear and clothing made from natural fibres to complement its sheepskin boots becoming a brand of choice for its largely female customer base who regard the brand as providing them with individual clothing and footwear pieces based on craft values that quickly become their wardrobe favourites.

Having successfully developed a small range of clothing to complement their range of sheepskin boots, the Whitworths felt it would be beneficial to bring a partner into the business to help with the next stage of growth.

Taking a significant minority stake in 2010, Piper has been able to help develop the Celtic brand by adding a senior management team alongside the founders to enable growth, expanding the clothing offer, rebranding from Celtic Sheepskin to the more appropriate name of Celtic & Co, and beginning to expand internationally.

I have had really bad experience in the past with investors really damaging the brand and in getting the brand balance wrong. Piper are really brand driven, and have invested in a diverse range of brands. But they are all about the brand, together with the finance, rather than just the finance

Monique Louis, Managing Director, Celtic & Co

The journey

1990 Nick and Kath Whitworth buy Celtic from a local builder with the grand total of 7 pairs of boots
2004 Nick and Kath Whitworth buy Celtic from a local builder with the grand total of 7 pairs of boots
2005 Clothing is introduced
2010 Piper invests for a minority stake, introducing a Chairman and Finance Director
2011 Monique Louis joins as Managing Director
2012 Celtic Sheepskin is launched in the USA
2013 The business rebrands as Celtic & Co

Current investments