This development is still in the rumor stages, so no need to get worked up yet. According to rumors, it is said that Valentino has made a move to purchase Balmain. Les Echos, a French newspaper, published a report stating that Valentino offered up €500 million ($569 million) for the label for which Olivier Rousteing is creative director.
Balmain has been a hot topic in the fashion industry lately, especially with its collaboration collections with H&M and recent moves to expand via its hair and child lines. Acquiring the brand would likely result in greater, and faster, expansion and inevitably greater revenue for Valentino, which is owned by a group of investors from Qatari through the Mayhoola for Investment Corporation.
According to The Fashion Law, it seems the Italian luxury brand will have some competition with acquiring the Balmain fashion house. Two other parties, a “Chinese group and an American investor,” who have since remained unnamed, have also brought forth competitive offers for the house; who knows, perhaps Balmain will have a bidding war on their hands before the end of the week.
According to the continued rumors, the heirs of Alain Hivelin, majority holder and former chairman of Balmain, will have until this Thursday, April 7, to make a decision on whether or not to accept any of the three provided offers. So this may be a development surrounded by rumors, but at least it will be concluded quickly, with a purposed deadline of Thursday. These rumors aren’t so farfetched, though, as just two months ago in February, the heirs of Balmain were looking for buyers.
Ever since Rousteing took his position as creative director five years ago, acting as successor to Christophe Decarnin, the brand has seen a great deal of success. Rousteing has seen to it that the Balmain name has been linked to plenty of famous customers, such as the Kardashian/Jenner crowd, who has since been crowned as the “Balmain army.” The H&M collaboration, which went live back in 2015, broadened the brand’s horizons, which brought about a great deal more interest from nations around the world. With all of this publicity, it is clear how Rousteing was able to become the first designer able to earn more than one million followers on Instagram, and also how outside parties are so interested in acquiring the brand now more than ever.
French investment bank Bucéphale Finance reportedly obtained a sale mandate that came from the family, which stated the brand would find a selling point somewhere between €300 and €400 million, as the brand has an estimated annual revenue of €30 million, according to Les Echos. This puts Valentino’s offer well above what was suggested by the mandate, and also makes one wonder what the other offers may have been. We can only hope now that the rumors ring true and that our curiosity will be sated by this Thursday, when it was reported that the Balmain heirs will be making their decision.
Photo courtesy of Vogue