PPR Acquires Italian Jeweler Pomellato to Boost Luxury Offering

Pomellato campaign featuring Tilda Swinton | Source: Pomellato

PARIS, France — PPR SA, the French owner of Gucci and sporting goods maker Puma SE, said it will buy a majority stake in Italy’s Pomellato from closely held RA.MO SpA to expand its jewelry offerings.

The deal is subject to competition authority approval and is expected to be completed in the coming weeks, Paris-based PPR said today in a statement. Andrea Morante, a co-shareholder of RA.MO alongside Pomellato founder Pino Rabolini, will remain chief executive officer of the Milan-based jeweler, PPR said. Financial terms and the size of the stake were not disclosed.

PPR shares rose as much as 4.2 percent, and were 2.4 percent higher at 176.65 euros by 10:21 a.m. in Paris.

Pomellato, known for its M’ama non m’ama stacking rings as well as the Dodo brand, has an enterprise value of 270 million euros ($351 million) to 300 million euros, according to Thomas Mesmin, an analyst at CA Cheuvreux in Paris. The acquisition is PPR’s fourth in the past year as it seeks to more than double its revenue to 24 billion euros by 2020.

“We have great ambitions for the Pomellato group,” PPR CEO Francois-Henri Pinault said in the statement. The company “will be able to step up the pace of its growth and expand its geographic footprint.”

Tilda Swinton

Pomellato, whose trinkets have been worn by Oscar-winning actress Tilda Swinton, had sales of 146 million euros in 2012, PPR said. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization were about 23 million euros last year, a person with knowledge of Pomellato told Bloomberg in March.

“We see as a positive that PPR increases its exposure to branded jewelry,” said Mario Ortelli, an analyst at Sanford Bernstein, who forecasts 9 percent compound annual growth for the category in the next five years.

Pomellato received expressions of interest from at least four luxury goods makers including Prada SpA, according to a person familiar with the situation. PPR said in January it is looking to acquire brands that don’t overlap with its existing portfolio. The company, which plans to change its name to Kering in June, has bought stakes in Chinese jeweler Qeelin, British fashion designer Christopher Kane and tannery France Croco in the past year.

“Becoming global brands is no longer an option for Pomellato and Dodo, it is a necessity,” Morante said in the statement. “With this in mind, we have undertaken a lengthy review of our best strategic alternatives and reached the conclusion that joining Kering was far and away the most favorable course of action.”

By: Andrew Roberts; Editors: John Bowker, David Risser