An alleged January 31 deadline was set to submit offers for a stake in the Roberto Cavalli firm. Fashion designer Roberto Cavalli sold his namesake brand to Italian private equity firm Clessidra SGR S.p.A. for an undisclosed sum in the year 2015. International investment firm L-GAM and Chow Tai Fook Enterprises Ltd, a Hong Kong-based holding company controlled by the Cheng family, became co-investors in the company. Nearly four years after the acquisition, German designer Philipp Plein is reportedly looking to take control of the Florentine luxury brand.
Last January, Plein celebrated the 20-year anniversary of his namesake brand, via his Milan men’s fashion week presentation. The Germany-born designer, who’s based in Switzerland, is notorious for his in-your-face designs defined by animal skins, skulls, and not-so-subtle graphics. Plein stands at the helm of the Philipp Plein International Group, parenting company of brands which include Philipp Plein, Plein Sport, and Billionaire Couture.
Rumors relating to a possible takeover by Plein of the Italian luxury brand started late last years, following the acquisition of Versace by Michael Kors’ Capri Holdings. Clessidra owns a 90% majority stake in the company that was founded by Roberto Cavalli in the Seventies. Following the 2015 sale, the founder and former Creative Director of the luxury brand still owns a 10% stake in the firm synonymous with animal prints and joie de vivre.
Cavalli generated revenues of €152.4 million over the year 2017. Despite revenues being down 1.8% in comparison to 2016 figures, the company forecast a return to growth over the 2018 financial year. The brand is reportedly looking for growth in Asia, while Europe and the United States remain Roberto Cavalli’s main markets.
Creative Director and entrepreneur Philipp Plein has enjoyed a growth spurt in recent years. In 2016 he added Plein Sport, a line of fashionable activewear, to his existing brand portfolio. That same year Plein acquired a 51% stake in Billionaire Couture, a luxury menswear label founded by former Formula One manager Flavio Briatore. At present Philipp Plein, an independent self-financed brand, boasts over 120 mono-brand stores worldwide. It’s been reported the group headed by Plein, generates annual revenues averaging around €300 million.
Following Roberto Cavalli’s exit from his company as a Creative Director, he’s been succeeded by Peter Dundas and Paul Surridge. Besides the Roberto Cavalli main line, the Roberto Cavalli Group includes diffusion line Just Cavalli, Cavalli Class, Roberto Cavalli Junior, a home collection, and Cavalli-branded night clubs.
Clessidra and Philipp Plein could not be reached for comment regarding the possible acquisition.