LONDON — Victoria Beckham is set to kick her business into high gear with a 30 million-pound minority investment from the British backer behind brands including Ami Paris, Miller Harris, Valextra and Alain Mikli.
Neo Investment Partners has taken a minority stake in Victoria Beckham Ltd., valuing it at 100 million pounds, according to an unsourced report in The Sunday Telegraph.
WWD reported earlier this year that Beckham had been looking for minority investment since 2016. The company had entered into advanced negotiations with L Catterton, but that deal fell through.
Neo is based in London and has a variety of investments in the lifestyle arena. It has also invested in the bakery chain Paul, luxury café Ladurée and the Italian restaurant Obicà.
It bills itself as a hands-on investor and an “expert” brand builder that works alongside founder-entrepreneurs, “supporting their teams with total involvement and a commitment to excellence and integrity.”
A Neo spokesman could not be reached for comment on Sunday, and a Victoria Beckham spokeswoman did not return repeated requests for comment.
The fashion company is owned by Beckham Brand Holdings, which is controlled by Victoria and David Beckham, and Simon Fuller’s entertainment and content company XIX Management U.K. Ltd. Senior managers also hold stakes.
The money will be used to expand Beckham’s retail network, build her e-commerce platform and pay down debt, according to industry sources. The company is still hunting for a chief executive officer after the departure of Zach Duane earlier this year.
Fuller and Beckham have steadily built up the business since its launch nearly a decade ago, moving rapidly into new product categories and working on collaborations with the likes of The Estée Lauder Cos., Target and, most recently, Reebok. She is also investigating moves into the skin-care and fragrance categories, although nothing has been finalized.
Beckham’s three main business categories are ready-to-wear, eyewear and accessories, and sources said eyewear is a major business driver. The designer originally launched eyewear in 2009 in partnership with British brand Cutler and Gross.
The brand has two flagships in London and in the U.K. and is sold through a variety of department stores including Harvey Nichols, Selfridges and Neiman Marcus.
Earlier this month, the designer announced a collaboration with Reebok. As part of the new long-term partnership, there will be a Reebok x Victoria Beckham collection due out late next year.
Her creations will be part of the Reebok Innovation Collective, an initiative that focuses on creating footwear and apparel that delivers the next generation of performance and expression.
“As a brand, we look to partner with not just influential women, but women who want to truly change the world,” said Reebok’s Corinna Werkle, senior vice president of women’s initiatives at Reebok.
According to the latest accounts filed at Companies House, the official register of U.K. businesses, turnover at Victoria Beckham Ltd. climbed 7.1 percent to 36.5 million pounds on a continuing operations basis, in fiscal 2015.
Losses widened to 4.6 million pounds on a continuing operations basis. The company noted in the annual accounts that losses were in line with budgets and reflected the investment in capacity and expansion initiatives as the brand strives to grow and become an international lifestyle proposition.
The 2015 directors’ report for Beckham Brand Holdings said its plan is to “further grow” the Victoria Beckham fashion business by expanding the “depth and breadth” of the wholesale business and expand the retail offering as well.
In the summer of 2015, rumors were rife that LVMH was set to buy Beckham’s businesses, but the French company denied them, and Beckham said her brand was not for sale. Sources said LVMH looked at Victoria Beckham Ltd. and passed on the investment opportunity.