Market Pulse | Prada and Ferragamo Hit the Stock Market

Savigny Luxury Index June 2011 | Source: Savigny Partners

LONDON, United Kingdom — The M&A and IPO scene in luxury goods and fashion continues to storm ahead. This month’s Market Pulse reveals a redefined Savigny Luxury Index which now includes Italian fashion powerhouses Prada, and soon, Salvatore Ferragamo. Big news • Two very high-profile IPOs: Prada listed in Hong Kong on 24 June and Salvatore Ferragamo listed in Milan on 29 June.  Both pulled off their IPOs amongst tricky

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Market Pulse | All Systems Go

Savigny Luxury Index May 2011 | Source: Savigny Partners

LONDON, United Kingdom — As luxury stock valuations continue to roar ahead, even as the overall market has stalled, and luxury brands go to private and public investors to finance further expansion, we take our monthly check of the Market Pulse to understand the key drivers. Big news • The Savigny Luxury Index continues its upward trend led by the bullish outlook for the sector in terms of both organic growth and acquisitions •

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Market Pulse | The Luxury Consumer Is Back

Savigny Luxury Index March 2011 | Source: Savigny Partners

LONDON, United Kingdom — This month’s Market Pulse shows a continuing upward trend for luxury and fashion stocks versus the MSCI World market benchmark, erasing any lingering doubts about the return of the luxury consumer. Big news • Luxury brands have had an excellent start to the year reporting strong Q1 results. Double digit sales growth has been fuelled by continued strong growth in China and economic recovery in the US

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Market Pulse | Luxury stocks bounce back following Japan crisis

Savigny Luxury Index March 2011 | Source: Savigny Partners

Today,  BoF welcomes Pierre Mallevays as a contributing editor and launches Market Pulse, a monthly look at how the fashion news that everyone is talking about is impacting stock market movements. Big news: • John Galliano dismissed from Dior days before the A/W 2011 fashion shows resulting in a PR crisis and leaving the brand without a creative director • LVMH announces the surprise take-over of Bulgari, valuing the business at

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BoF Exclusive | UK fashion start-up Fabricly secures seed funding from Y Combinator

LONDON, United Kingdom — Despite the well-documented technological advancements in the consumer-facing elements of the fashion value chain — marketing, PR and retail — there are still huge opportunities for optimising manufacturing and wholesale activities using technology, especially for smaller fashion companies which typically use Excel and other manual tools to stay on top of everything. So, when an enterprising start-up offers to do this in a way that is not cost-prohibitive, The Business of Fashion is bound to be interested. I first met Ari Helgason last year when he introduced me to World on a Hanger, a London-based start-up focused on streamlining the manufacturing process for independent fashion companies (see explanatory video here). Since then, Ari and his business…

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Fashion Investing | Small-cap M&A Volume up in January 2009

NEW YORK, United States — Just before the madness of fashion week started, I read an interesting study by KTA Capital, an independent investment bank based in New York. The report analyses small-cap market activity for the month of January 2009 globally, as well as in selected national markets. The first section is not a surprise: “There has been a substantial reduction in the amount of corporate finance activity

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Luxury Outlook | Hermès continues to defy gravity

Savigny Luxury Index Since Jan 1, 2007, Courtesy of Savigny Partners

LONDON, United Kingdom — It’s all been a bit doom and gloom around here for months now, and I’m afraid the latest Savigny Luxury Index (SLI) does not deviate from this theme. Valuation multiples have dropped from a peak of 13x EBITDA (operating profit) in June 2007 to 8.5x EBITDA just before Christmas, effectively wiping billions off of the market capitalisation of luxury stocks. But there is still some good news for

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Fashion investing | Return of the strategic investor?

Apax Partners, the London-based private equity firm, has abandoned its bid to take a stake in Escada AG, the embattled German fashion company.  Citing deteriorating market conditions, Apax stated that "the recent evolution of the stock price and the weakness of the international financial market do not give a basis for pursuing the project." This is absolutely the right decision. Not only has Escada become somewhat of an industry basket-case in recent years, on Wednesday the company also revised its earnings projections for year ending October 31 downwards yet again. EBITDA margins are  expected to fall by about 25% compared to 2007. The company cited recessionary conditions in the USA and other key markets as the reason behind the revisions.…

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Tanner Krolle: Investor merry-go-round

Just the other day we were commenting on the importance of a good fit between a brand, its management and the underlying creative talent. Today's WWD says that Tanner Krolle, the prestigious English leather goods brand is back on the block, after a falling-out between Albion Investors and its second creative and management team for Tanner Krolle. It's further proof that investing in fashion and luxury is not for the faint-of-heart or the short-of-luxury-experience (Albion's other investments include companies involved with shelter design and manufacturing, home healthcare services, solid waste services, and crude oil transportation services). In the past year, the design aesthetic and creative vision of Tanner Krolle had been beautifully refined by Manuela Morin as a discreet luxury…

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Breaking news: TSM Capital invests in Matthew Williamson

WWD's lead story today reveals that TSM Capital, an offshoot of Marvin Traub Associates, has invested in  London-based Matthew Williamson, having raised funds from a silent investor. The deal gives TSM a 22% stake of Williamson's business. Last year, Williamson took on investment from Baugur Group, where Aslaug Magnusdottir, now one of the key individuals behind TSM, was responsible for venture investments, like the one in Williamson. The investments will focus on early stage businesses in fashion apparel and accessories. Traub described to WWD the market gap that TSM is aiming to fill: "Over time, we frequently saw many great companies whom we thought were talented, and who could use funding. But if you're trying to raise a range of…

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Zandra Rhodes and Betsey Johnson: Fashion grannies rock on

Two legendary doyennes of the fashion world have been making news this week -- and not just for their colourful fashions. Today, Betsey Johnson announced a majority investment in her business from Boston's Castanea Partners. Some observers are questioning Castanea's logic for investing in a 30 year old brand whose namesake is already a grandmother and whose high-profile days are long over.  On the contrary, the business  has a solid own-retail network of 51 stores and a respectable $200m in sales. This could provide a great platform for further growth, as long as Castanea doesn't dilute the brand's famous quirky irreverence, which is what is most appealing to its loyal fans. Earlier this week British fashion icon, Zandra Rhodes, garnered…

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Valentino: Fashioning change from private equity

This week's Economist ominously warns of "The Trouble with Private Equity" at a time when many in the fashion world are wondering how the infusion of private capital will impact their industry. In the last month alone, La Perla, Samsonite and Valentino have all been snapped up by private equity funds. Just today, The Sunday Times broke the news that Prada has also been in talks with private investors. (Not surprisingly, Prada has denied these reports, but it is not hard to see why this would be a natural option for Patrizio Bertelli, especially given several failed attempts at taking Prada public.) The recent investment exuberance around fashion brands is a dramatic departure from the stance that many professional investors…

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