Italian private equity fund Alcedo SGR has taken a majority stake in EXA Group, a leading general contractor specialized in setting up boutiques for luxury and fashion brands ranging from Tiffany, Bulgari and Ermenegildo Zegna to Ralph Lauren, Dior, Valentino and Gucci. EXA also owned knitwear brand Malo from 2010 to 2014 through its firm Evanthe, which is no longer part of the group.
The acquisition was made through the new Fondo Alcedo IV, which paid 11 million euros, or $12.2 million at current exchange rate, for 55 percent of EXA Group.
The founders of EXA, which has a business of 55 million euros, or $61.1 million, will maintain a 45 percent stake in the company.
EXA is headquartered in Arezzo, Tuscany, and counts offices in Milan, an American subsidiary based in New York, and branches in Moscow and Central America.
This is the first investment for Fondo Alcedo IV, which has reached funds totaling 176 million euros, or $195.6 million, on a first closing target of 90 million euros, or $100 million.
Alcedo will support EXA Group in its commercial expansion, strategic acquisitions and “the entrance in adjacent sectors with the goal to replicate the business model in other market,” the company said.
EXA was founded in 2005 by Giuseppe Polvani, a former Malo chief executive officer; Gianrico Specchio, a former executive at the Prada Group and Coin, and Paolo Pratesi, also a former Prada executive.
The three partners said in a joint statement that “in an increasingly competitive global market we felt the need to share our vision and our projects and we are sure we have found in Alcedo the ideal partner to support us in our future growth….”
“EXA in the past 10 years had a constant growth establishing itself as the main partner of international fashion houses for the establishment of retail stores around the world,” said Maurizio Masetti, managing partner and president of Alcedo. Masetti highlighted his belief that “the retail market will continue to grow” and that EXA Group will “become the international leader in the sector.”