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Chinese textile group set to buy Sandro & Maje owner SMCP

Lauretta Roberts
30 March 2016

Chinese textile group Shandong Ruyi is expected to seal a deal today to acquire control of French group SMCP, owner of Sandro, Maje and Claudie Pierlot, for €1.3 billion, according to Reuters.

SMCP, is currently controlled by private equity firm KKR, and had filed documents earlier this month to launch an IPO (initial public offering) which was expected to happen as early as April.

It is understood that the business had been in talks with Shandong Ruyi for several months, but they had stalled due to differences in price expectations. The filing of the IPO documents is believed to have prompted Shangdong Ruyi make a move.

The group's founders Evelyne and Ylan Chetrite and Judith Milgrom, who together own 21.11% of the company, are said to have favoured an IPO but KKR, which owns 70%, backed the deal with Shangdong.

SMCP posted sales up 33% at €675m with EBITDA up 44% at €107m in 2015. It also opened 139 new points of sale during the year, 101 of which are directly controlled, while online sales increased by 138%.

Sandro was founded in 1984 by Evelyne and Ylan Chetrite as a wholesale brand. It opened its first retail store in Paris in 2004. Sister brand Maje was founded by Judith Milgrom, again as a wholesale brand, in 1998 and made its move into retail in Paris in 2003.

In 2009 Sandro and Maje acquired Claudie Pierlot, which had been established by the French designer of the same name in 1984, and the SMCP Group was formally established in 2010.

Since that date there has been an aggressive roll-out of the brands’ global points of sale, which now number more than 1,000. All three brands are positioned in the "accessible luxury" space in womenswear; Sandro also has a menswear offer.


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