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Philip Day (businessman)

Philip Day
Born Philip Edward Day
October 1965 (age 52)
Residence Dubai, UAE
Nationality British
Known for CEO and owner, Edinburgh Woollen Mill
Net worth £1.05 billion (April 2016)[1]
Spouse(s) Debra Day
Children 3

Philip Edward Day (born October 1965) is a Dubai-based British billionaire, the CEO and owner of Edinburgh Woollen Mill (EWM).[1] Born in Stockport, he did several newspaper rounds as a boy and worked at different times for Coats Viyella, Wensum and Aquascutum before joining Edinburgh Woollen Mill and later leading a management buyout.

Early life

Philip Edward Day was born in October 1965.[2][3][4] He grew up on a council estate in Stockport, working in his parents' newsagents shop and did several newspaper rounds a day.[3]


Day declined a university place to begin a business career, and worked for Coats Viyella and Wensum, before being headhunted to join Aquascutum at the age of 28. Day stayed at Aquascutum for five years eventually being promoted to joint managing director.[3]

In 2001, Day left Aquascutum and joined Edinburgh Woollen Mill, where he led a buyout backed by Rutland Fund Management, a private equity firm. In 2002, he "seized control" with Royal Bank of Scotland backing his £69 million bid to buy out Rutland.[3]

Day owns Edinburgh Woollen Mill, which in 2016 acquired the Austin Reed and Country Casuals brands, following the bankruptcy of the 116-year-old fashion retailer.[5]

As of April 2016, his net worth is £1.05 billion, according to the Sunday Times Rich List.[1]

In May 2017, he opened the first Days (department store), in what had been the BHS premises in Guildhall Square, Carmarthen, which will house Peacocks, Edinburgh Woollen Mill, Ponden Home, Jane Norman, and Austin Reed brands.[6][7] This is intended to be the first of a chain of Days department stores.[8]


Day owns a wildlife sanctuary in Scotland which undertakes research into the preservation and reintroduction of endangered Scottish wildlife, including wolves and wildcats.[9] The park has more than 14 species of deer.[10] Day also owns the largest green energy Anaerobic Digester in the UK.[9]

He is the main financial backer of Carlisle F.C. although he says that he doesn't like football. He says he supports the team because otherwise it wouldn't exist. Edinburgh Woollen Mill is also the main shirt sponsor of the team.[11]

Personal life

Edmond Castle, c. 1840–50. Drawing by Charles Greenwood or Frederick Peake.[12]

Day has been married to his wife Debra since 1990, they live in Edmond Castle, a Tudor-style house near Brampton, Cumbria, England,[3][13] built 1824 to 1829, and designed by Sir Robert Smirke.[13] Day is keen on shooting, especially pheasant and duck, and has been a director of Carlisle United, the local football club.[3]

They have two daughters and one son.[1][3] In 2016, their daughter Lauren Day joined the Edinburgh Woollen Mill Group board as group development director.[14] In 2010, their daughter Kirstie Day won Miss Cumbria; and a leaked email from EWM's head office to its stores ordered staff to vote for her to become Miss England, "I need and expect all stores to register a minimum of 10 votes today and I mean everybody!"[3]

In 2013, Day was fined £450,000, ordered to pay £457,000 in costs, and called "grossly negligent" by the judge, for clearing part of Gelt Woods, near Brampton, and a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), for a pheasant shoot.[4]

In February 2014, Day was due in Dumfries Sheriff Court on a charge of driving without due care and attention, after admitting to driving at 83mph and overtaking unsafely on the A7 between Auchenroch and Canonbie in February 2012.[15]

As of 2017, Day lives in Dubai, and "spends fewer than 10 days a year in the UK".[16][17]


  1. ^ a b c d "Rich List 2016". The Sunday Times (page 37). 24 April 2016. 
  2. ^ "Edinburgh Woollen Mill Limited (The) – Officers (free information from Companies House)". Companies House. Retrieved 9 September 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h Sarah Butler. "Knight in a comfy cardie who rescued Peacocks shows he has style | Business". The Guardian. Retrieved 22 January 2017. 
  4. ^ a b "Edinburgh Woollen Mill's Phillip Day loses woodland damage fine appeal – BBC News". Retrieved 22 January 2017. 
  5. ^ "Analysis: What will Philip Day do with the Austin Reed brand?". Retrieved 22 January 2017. 
  6. ^ Soult, Graham. "Days department store in the ex-BHS in Carmarthen: what we know so far - Soult's Retail View". Retrieved 31 May 2017. 
  7. ^ Tim Wallace. "New department store Days opens in bid to defy trend of closures". Retrieved 31 May 2017. 
  8. ^ "Philip Day confirms Jaeger buy, opens first Days department store - News : Retail (#832507)". Retrieved 31 May 2017. 
  9. ^ a b "Philip Day". Retrieved November 16, 2017. 
  10. ^ "The Scottish Deer Center". Retrieved November 16, 2017. 
  11. ^ "Philip Day: If I didn't sponsor Carlisle Utd, club might not exist". Retrieved November 16, 2017. 
  12. ^ Edmond Castle, the Seat of Thomas Henry Graham. Rostron & Edwards. Retrieved 22 January 2017.
  13. ^ a b "Edmond Castle – Visit Cumbria". Retrieved 22 January 2017. 
  14. ^ "Philip Day's daughter joins Edinburgh Woollen Mill Group board". Retrieved 22 January 2017. 
  15. ^ "Tycoon in Dubai and misses court (From HeraldScotland)". 9 February 2012. Retrieved 31 May 2017. 
  16. ^ "Philip Day confirms Jaeger buy, opens first Days department store - News : Retail (#832507)". Retrieved 31 May 2017. 
  17. ^ Sarah Butler (1 January 1970). "Edinburgh Woollen Mill acquires Jaeger brand in plan for new chain | Business". The Guardian. Retrieved 31 May 2017.