SINGAPORE — L Capital Asia, the private equity fund backed by LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, said this week it has bought stakes in an Australian food retailer and an Indian cinema operator, diversifying its existing portfolio of mainly fashion-related investments.
L Capital said Thursday it has taken a 60 percent stake in Jones the Grocer, a gourmet food emporium that also has a presence in Singapore, New Zealand and the Middle East. The acquisition, which cost $18 million, marks a departure from the fund’s policy of only acquiring minority stakes in its investments. L Capital opted for a majority stake due to the small size of the company, which has about 350 employees worldwide, explained a spokeswoman.
L Capital said it would work with Jones the Grocer, which is known for its pastries, to expand into North Asia, Southeast Asia and the Middle East. It expects the food company to grow five-fold in the next five years but did not quantify the Australian company’s sales volume. RELATED STORY: The L Word, L Capital's Strategy >>
Separately, L Capital said Wednesday it will buy 10 percent of the listed shares of PVR Ltd., an Indian cinema operator, for 577 million rupees, or about $10.4 million at current exchange. It will also put up 501 million rupees, or about $9 million, for a joint venture with PVR that will invest in food-and-beverage, gaming and other lifestyle-related opportunities in retail malls.
Sanjay Gujral, L Capital Asia’s regional managing director, said PVR has access to prime real estate across India.
The investment comes despite reports that consumer spending in Asia’s third-largest economy will only grow by 5.7 percent this year, down from 24 percent in 2010. Gujral said that he expects multiplexes and cinema operators to see “much healthier growth” than general retail and that India’s cinema entertainment market was still relatively undeveloped.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast