PARIS — Iro is leaning toward Asia.
Fosun International, the investment firm listed in Hong Kong, is moving closer to a deal to take a stake in the French fashion label. “The transaction is in progress,” a spokeswoman for Fosun told WWD, without divulging any further details.
This comes just a few weeks after SMCP, the corporate parent of the Sandro, Maje and Claudie Pierlot French fashion chains, was brought under Chinese Textile Firm Shandong Ruyi, when Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. sold its 70 percent stake.
Fosun has a diverse portfolio of interests, including in fashion and retail. It’s perhaps best known internationally as the owner of Club Med.
Iro, founded by the Parisian brothers Laurent and Arik Bitton in 2004, introduced men’s wear in 2011 and opened its first U.S. outpost in 2013, a 2,000-square-foot flagship at 450 Broome Street and the corner of Mercer Street in Manhattan. Since then, it opened other boutiques Stateside on Columbus Avenue in New York, in Beverly Hills and in Venice Beach in Los Angeles. It also has stores in capitals including Paris, London, Madrid, Rome and Copenhagen. In addition, the brand has a presence in high-end department and specialty stores worldwide, including Barneys New York, Harrods and Le Bon Marché. There have been reports that investors such as Guess’ Marciano brothers were circling Iro.
A spokeswoman for Iro declined to comment on the transaction.