Chinese Gangtai Group Ltd., which provides real estate management and development services, acquired a 85 majority stake in luxury jeweler and watchmaker Buccellati. The operation, whose value was not disclosed, is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2017.
According to sources close to the deal, Buccellati was valued at 230 million euros, or $240.3 million, plus debts equal to almost 270 million euros, or $282 million, enterprise value.
The agreement was signed between the Chinese group, the Buccellati family and Clessidra SGR. In 2013, the Milan-based private equity fund, which is part of Pesenti family’s investment holding Italmobiliare S.p.A., acquired a 70 percent stake in Buccellati for a sum of 80 million euros, or $102.6 million at average exchange.
Following the acquisition by Gangtai, which controls Gansu Gangtai Holding, one of the biggest gold jewelry distributors and online retailers in China, Clessidra and the Buccellati family will retain a 15 percent minority stake.
“Gangtai decided to invest in Buccellati after realizing that international customers are becoming more and more interested in luxury, special jewelry pieces with a premium price,” said Brozzetti, adding that the Chinese group developed a strategic plan aimed at accelerating growth on an international scale.
According to Brozzetti, Gangtai’s investments will be focused on three areas — retail, communication and marketing, as well as merchandising.
“We will open 88 stores across Europe, the United States and the Far East,” said Brozzetti, adding that the company will increment the quantity of one-of-a-kind and ready-to-wear jewelry pieces available in each store. “In terms of creativity and product placement, nothing will change,” he added.
“Our family created this company almost 100 years ago and it will continue to be deeply involved in the development of both its business and its creativity, which enabled Buccellati to create a recognizable and unique style in the fine-jewelry and silverware sectors,” said Andrea Buccellati. “We are happy with Gangtai Group’s commitment to invest significant resources for a further expansion of the Buccellati brand.”
Buccellati operates 21 stores globally, including doors in Milan, Paris, London, Moscow, Dubai, New York, Beverly Hills, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Seoul.