By Ian McConnell

SCOTTISH online fashion retailer, founded and headed by tyre entrepreneur Mike Welch, has closed a £3 million funding round, led by Glasgow-based private equity house Maven Capital Partners.

Atterley meanwhile reported a 200 per cent year-on-year rise in sales for the first quarter, with the majority of the growth attributed to strong repeat sales and “new geographic markets”.

Mr Welch cited a “slight tailwind” arising from the coronavirus pandemic and associated restrictions and the need for consumers to shop from home.

Edinburgh-based Atterley said the investment, which also includes commitments from Scottish Enterprise and existing shareholders, would allow it to execute its "planned growth strategy with a key focus on developing its international footprint, particularly in the US”.

Atterley is a fashion retail marketplace used by more than 250 independent boutiques to reach customers worldwide. It has around 3,000 brands live on its website.

Chairman Mr Welch said: “This investment is a game-changer for us and really sets us up for our next big phase of growth. We have always taken a test-and-learn approach to our investments in growth, and that has not only kept us in control of our destiny as shareholders but has carried us through some of the most testing times for businesses that we have ever seen. I am excited that in partnership with Maven we will be able to accelerate our growth and capitalise on the massive market opportunity.”

Mr Welch announced last month that he had merged his online tyre retailing business in the US with a major player in the sector.

He became president and chief executive of the enlarged business formed by the merger of his Tirescanner business with American Tire Distributors’ Tirebuyer operation.

Mr Welch sold his previous online tyres business, Peebles-based, to Michelin in 2015 for £50 million.