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Lush settles dispute with former boss over blocked share transfer

Sophie Smith
19 February 2024

Lush has settled a legal dispute with its former Chief Executive Officer, Andrew Gerrie, over a blocked transfer of shares.

The British beauty brand made an official complaint about Gerrie’s investment firm Silverwood Brands last year after the business sought to acquire a 19.8% stake, worth £216.8 million, in Lush from the former boss and his wife, Alison Hawksley.

Gerrie, who joined the brand shortly after it was founded, was handed shares in the business under strict conditions governing their forward sales. Under the reported terms, Lush has the right of first refusal if Gerrie wants to sell any of his holdings.

As a result, Lush previously blocked the transfer of shares to Silverwood, saying they did not match those previously offered to the remaining shareholders. It claimed that "the separation of legal and beneficial interests in the shares is not permissible" and that the price paid for the shares was required to be made in cash, whereas Silverwood’s payment was allegedly not.


The brand told The Times that it has now settled the legal dispute as "Gerrie and Silverwood Brands have now accepted Lush’s position that the transaction was not in compliance with the company’s articles and the sale is not now proceeding".

VSA Capital Group, the broker that held the shares during the battle, said it had returned them to Gerrie and had agreed to co-operate with his and Hawskley’s objective of achieving an "unwind transaction".

As part of the settlement, Gerrie and Hawksley will pay Silverwood £300,000 in cash for legal costs incurred.

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