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Chinese Overseas Acquisitions One After Another Continues to Bulldoze into 2018

May 17, 2018.Siqi DaiBeijing, CN
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2017 is a year of overseas acquisitions by Chinese companies and the acquisition momentum in 2018 is even stronger. Chinese companies are acquiring overseas brands is on a streak and this year, major companies are beginning to reach out to international brands. Ruyi Group acquired Aquascutum, a century-old trench coat brand in Britain in March 2017 and also acquired Invista (headquarters: USA, Wichita, Kansas) on October 28, an apparel and premium fabrics business (expected to be completed by mid-2018). Following this, Ruyi Group emerged from a competition in the acquisition of Swiss luxury brand BALLY and successfully acquired it on February 9, 2018. Qiu Yafu, chairman of the Board of Directors of Ruyi Group, stated that “BALLY is one of the world's most luxurious shoes and leather accessories brand and is an important acquisition in order for the group to be at the top of the apparel industry.”

In addition, China's famous menswear brand company, Septwolves (headquarter: China, Fujian) acquired the ownership of Karl Lagerfeld in China August 2017 for a value of US$240.30 million. In September of the same year, the famous Chinese sports brand company Guirenniao (company headquarters: China, Fujian) and the famous American tennis brand company, PRINCE Sports LLC (company headquarters: U.S., New Jersey, Bordentown) signed the PRINCE trademark asset ownership sale and purchase agreement. They invested US$20 million to acquire the PRINCE trademark rights in China (including mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan) and South Korea.

Half of 2018 hasn’t even passed yet. In addition to the above-mentioned, another acquisition veteran, Fosun International (company headquarters: Shanghai, China) has also achieved a breaking record. On February 22 this year, Fosun announced the acquisition of Jeanne Lanvin SAS (Lanvin), a French Haute Couture fashion brand and stated that this acquisition will further help Fosun Fashion Group to create a fashion focused enterprise platform. With the combined forces of Lanvin’s long fashion history with Fosun's global resources, an all new development unfolds. Fosun was not about to stop after this acquisition. It announced on March 1, 2018 that it had acquired Wolford AG (which handles Wolford; a famous Austrian Luxury under garment brand) and on May 4th, at the price of 12.80 euros per share had officially completed the acquisition of 50.87% stakes in Wolford.

Behind all these acquisitions, the Ruyi Group has continued to acquire foreign high-end brands since it acquired the Japanese apparel, Renown in 2010. Fosun following right behind the hot trail and between 2011 and 2013, it took the shares of Folli Follie, ST.JOHN and Caruso becoming the second largest shareholder of these brands. There has been no major movements in the company for several years, however this year’s two major acquisitions show that Fosun is fortifying itself again. Three major overseas brands have already been acquired in just a short span of time in four months beginning of 2018. It seems that Guirenniao and Septwolves are planning on acquiring more this year and the world is holding its breath for the next move.

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