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While Li Kai Shing misses it, Qatar Investment Group aquires Balmain

Models present creations by French designer Olivier Rousteing as part of his Fall/Winter 2012-2013 women's ready-to-wear fashion collection for fashion house Balmain during Paris fashion week March 1, 2012. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier (FRANCE - Tags: FASHION) - RTR2YOP1

Qatari investment group Mayhoola for Investments SPC announced Wednesday that it will acquire French fashion brand Balmain, following a robust auction targeting private equity bidders that included L Catterton, Permira and a vehicle backed by Hong Kong magnate Li Ka-shing, according to one source.

The company behind the brand, Balmain International SA, was acquired for about €500 million ($565 million) after an auction process run by French boutique investment bank Bucéphale Finance, said a source familiar with the matter who asked for confidentiality. The sellers were the heirs of Balmain’s late chairman and majority owner, Alain Hivelin, and management.

The source said that Balmain generated 2015 revenues of about €120 million and Ebitda of about €33 million, implying the €500 million deal price was done at 15 times Ebitda.

Other bidders, according to the source, included private equity firm L Catterton, which is backed by luxury conglomerate LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA; London-based financial sponsor Permira; and a vehicle backed by Hong Kong magnate Li Ka-shing.

The Deal has learned that Paris law firm Darrois Villey Maillot Brochier represented Mayhoola, while Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP served as outside counsel to Balmain.

Bucéphale said in a statement that the acquisition would allow Balmain to expand its accessories business and open new stores abroad. The brand currently operates stores in Dubai, Hangzhou, Hong Kong, London, Macau, New York, Paris, Qingdao, Shanghai, Seoul and Tokyo.

In 2012, Mayhoola acquired another high-fashion group, Valentino, for a reported €700 million. Among its other fashion holdings are a 65% stake in Italian menswear brand Pal Zileri and a 60% stake in British handbag designer Anya Hindmarch, for which Mayhoola paid £51.2 million ($75 million).

(Source: The Street)