Versace May Sell 20% Of Its Stake By Christmas

Versace, the Italian fashion house, is looking forward to sell around 20% of its stake to a new investor before Christmas, according to Reuters. The Chairman and the major shareholder of the Italian firm, Santo Versace announced the development ahead of a possible market listing in three to five years.

Versace may go public

“(The arrival of a new investor) is likely by Christmas but if it turns out to be January 15 nothing changes. A first step has been taken, now the others must follow,” Santo Versace said.

Versace is keen to invest the proceedings in the new outlets to capitalize the increasing demand of the luxury cloth and accessories, in the emerging markets. Mr. Versace said that the fashion house is evaluating an option to go public, and can do so, in the near future. He said that, at present, the most viable option is to enhance the growth of the company, which is valued above one billion euros now, and can be three times of the current valuation, in three years from now.

“There is no hurry. The door remains very much open,” Mr. Versace said.

Probable buyers interested

According to the sources, the probable buyers who could acquire 20% stake in the company include Italy’s state-controlled fund FSI, private equity firms Permira, Ardian, KKR & Co (KKR.N), CCMP Capital, Blackstone (BX.N), and Bahrain-based Investcorp.

The Chief executive of Clessidra, a private equity fund, said that the company is looking forward to hold a 20% stake in Versace.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the current owners of Versace have kept strict terms and conditions according to which the new investors should invest around €250 million or $338 million, and will not be authorized to bring about any changes in the current strategy and design direction of the company.

Family owned business

Versace is entirely owned by the family of the late founder Gianni Versace, who was murdered in 1997. The world famous and one of the most loved brands features Lady Gaga in its advertising campaigns.

Stakeholders in the company are Gianni’s brother Santo, who holds 30% stake, his sister Donatella holds 20% and Donatella’s daughter Allegra hold the remaining 50% of the stock.

Goldman Sachs GSGSC.UL and Banca IMI (ISP.MI) are advising Versace on the deal.