By  on August 7, 2012

NEW YORK — G-III Apparel Group Ltd. is set to make a splash in the luxury swim market by acquiring Vilebrequin from Netherlands-based private equity fund Fashion Fund I BV.

The deal is for a total purchase price of 85.5 million euros, or about $106.2 million, of which 70.5 million euros ($87.6 million) is in cash and another 15 million euros ($18.6 million) is in unsecured promissory notes, due Dec. 31, 2017, at an interest rate of 5 percent a year.

In addition, the agreement stipulates contingent future payments of up to 22.5 million euros ($27.9 million) based upon set performance objectives over the three years ending Dec. 31, 2015, which could make the total deal worth up to $134.1 million.

“An opportunity to acquire a preeminent luxury brand such as Vilebrequin does not happen very often. Vilebrequin sets a global standard for excellence and commands exceptional loyalty at a premium price in each of its markets,” said Morris Goldfarb, chairman and chief executive officer of G-III Apparel Group. “We believe that this brand is very powerful and expect to add more retail locations throughout the world, as well as develop the business beyond its heritage in men’s swimwear, accessories and resort-wear.”

Last year, Vilebrequin rang up sales of 45.1 million euros, or $55.9 million, with a substantial majority derived from the U.S. and Europe. There are currently 185 freestanding Vilebrequin stores and shops-in-shop around the world, with 60 owned and 125 franchised. France is the brand’s largest market, with 20 company-owned stores, followed by the U.S. with 16 stores and Italy with 13 stores.


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