LONDON — Italy’s stock market regulator Consob has reopened its review of Compagnie Financière Richemont’s offer document for 100 percent of the shares in Yoox Net-a-porter Group.
As reported on Feb. 21, Consob had suspended its review process pending the release of YNAP’s financial results for the year ended Dec. 31. The results were published on March 6.
Richemont said Thursday that: “Consob today informed that the review period for the approval of the offer document is reopened from March 8.”
Once Consob gives Richemont the green light — a decision is expected later this month — the luxury goods giant can publish the paperwork for the acquisition on its web site, and begin marketing its plan to shareholders. Shareholders will then decide which way to vote, although it’s expected they’ll throw their weight behind Richemont.
The public tender offer will be made through the special-purpose vehicle RLG Italia Holding SpA, a company that is in the process of being incorporated. If the deal goes through, the intention is to delist YNAP from the Milan Stock Exchange. YNAP would continue to be run as a separate business in the Richemont stable and its headquarters would remain in Italy.
On Jan. 22, Richemont revealed its intention to buy all the ordinary shares of Yoox Net-a-porter Group SpA it does not already own at 38 euros a share, for a value of up to 2.77 billion euros. Richemont owns 49 percent of YNAP’s shares.
“With this new step, we intend to strengthen Richemont’s presence and focus on the digital channel, which is becoming critically important in meeting luxury consumers’ needs,” Johann Rupert, chairman of Richemont, said in January.
“We see a meaningful opportunity to strengthen further Yoox Net-a-porter Group’s leading positioning in luxury e-commerce, growing the business in existing and new geographies, increasing product availability and range, and continuing to develop unparalleled services and content for today’s highly discerning consumers.”
As reported earlier this week, currencies and increased amortization on higher capital expenditures in IT and logistics dented YNAP’s bottom line, but the e-tailer reported growth in revenues and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization in 2017, fueled by all business channels in all regions.
Adjusted net profit decreased 26.1 percent to 51.2 million euros, compared with 69.3 million euros in 2016. The company attributed the drop mainly to a significant increase in net financial expenses due to foreign exchange rate losses, coupled with a greater incidence of ordinary depreciation and amortization attributable to higher capital expenditures.
During a conference call following the results announcement, YNAP’s corporate development and investor relations director Silvia Scagnelli reiterated that the group will be run as a separate company. “Richemont said that one of the reasons for the bid was to give additional resources to YNAP to grow faster,” she said.