The Swedish investment group Kinnevik is dividing its shares in Zalando among its own shareholders. Thus, the fashion platform loses its largest shareholder, accounting for 21 per cent, but at the same time gains a lot of new shareholders.
5.5 billion euro in shares
The Swedish investment company Kinnevik is pulling out of Zalando and thinks it is time to start investing again in new promising start-ups that are not yet listed on the stock market. The company, therefore, divides its shares, with a 21 per cent stake, worth 5.5 billion euros, among its own shareholders. This way, they get the chance to directly invest in the capital of the fashion platform.
However, Kinnevik has been one of the main investors in Zalando since 2010. When the online retailer went public in 2014, the Swedes held 32 per cent of all shares. Above all, however, the investor group wants to be a growth incubator and will be able to put more than two-thirds of its capital into younger, fast-growing digital companies thanks to its portfolio distribution, the Financial Times reports.
Time for a "new Zalando"
Georgi Ganev, CEO of Kinnevik, does stress that it is pulling out of a strong position and still believes in Zalando. "The platform can grow without us as the main shareholder. Our shareholders can enjoy the growth themselves, and we can focus on new companies and help bring a new Zalando into the world", is said.
The Zalando board of directors says it welcomes the new shareholders. "After such a successful cooperation, it is an obvious next step to give Kinnevik shareholders direct access to Zalando, and we look forward to welcoming them as direct shareholders in Zalando. We see this as an opportunity to gain new support for our vision and strategy in the future," says co-CEO Rubin Ritter, who himself will be stepping aside in May to support his wife's career.