Versace in search of minority shareholder

Versace in search of minority shareholder

MILAN - Versace is seeking a minority investor, a spokesman at the Italian fashion house still 100-per cent by the Versace family confirmed Wednesday, with a source saying 250 million euros (S$442 million) could be pumped into the luxury brand.

"The company is in the process of seeking a minority investment to bring in financial resources and accelerate development of the brand," said a spokesman, confirming Italian media reports.

A source told AFP that Versace hopes to select an investor next month and complete by the end of this year an investment of around 250 million euros for a stake of 15 to 20 per cent in the company, valuing it at 1.2 to 1.6 billion euros overall.

Italian daily Il Sole 24 Ore reported that a shortlist of three investors will be established during Milan Fashion Week which opened on Wednesday, and that the investment would take the form of a 150-million-euro hike in capital and the sale of 50 million euros in existing shares.

It cited among possible candidates Qatar's sovereign wealth fund allied with the Italian Strategic Fund, Italy's state-backed sovereign fund. The company declined to speculate on possible investors.

Versace was founded in 1978 by Gianni Versace. Following Gianni's 1997 murder at his Miami Beach mansion his sister Donatella took over as head of design.


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