Belgian fashion chain e5 mode has been sold to the Feniks Holding: for the first time, the company moves out of the founding family Kaesteker's ownership. The move sparks a debate whether or not an acquisition by FNG Group is upcoming.
New owner and CEO
Frédéric Helderweirt of the Feniks Holding has acquired 100 % of the shares in e5 mode, for an undisclosed amount. He has also become the company's new CEO. Just two years ago, Alexander Talpe bought 51 % of the chain from his uncle Etienne Kaesteker, leaving the remainder at Shopinvest, the Kaesteker family's holding company.
The chain suffers from the rise of e-commerce and changing consumer habits, its small size causes it to have a lack of advantages of scale and leaves the company suffering operational losses. This acquisition may help with the latter, as the new CEO struck a deal with Belgian fashion group FNG to join purchasing power. However, this has also led several experts to believe that FNG's eventual goal is a complete takeover when e5 mode is healthy again - something the group from Mechlin denies.
E5 mode was founded in 1979, by Griet Talpe and Etienne Kaesteker. The chain consists of some 70 stores and employs 400 people.