Hobbs operates 140 stores and concessions in the UK and Ireland

Hobbs operates 140 stores and concessions in the UK and Ireland

Private equity firm 3i has written down the value of its investment in women's wear retailer Hobbs by GBP14m (US$22.9m), blaming weak trading during the Christmas period.

3i acquired the retailer from Barclays Private Capital for GBP111m in 2004. Hobbs operates 140 stores and concessions in the UK and Ireland, with a growing online business in Europe, North America and Asia.

"Markets remain challenging for a number of our portfolio companies and the good overall performance was offset by a significant value reduction in the period of GBP14m for our investment in Hobbs due to trading weakness in the last quarter of 2013," 3i said in a statement.