French luxury company Kering (formerly PPR) is said to have its mind set on Swiss Richard Mille. The relatively young brand of watches should cost Kering between 340 and 400 million Swiss francs (between 275 and 325 million euro) and would fit perfectly in the plans of Kering to expand its jewellery and watch business. In the meantime the name change of PPR has been officially approved at the annual shareholders' meeting.
Up to 400 million Swiss francs
Earlier Kering already bought jewellery brands Pomellato and Qeelin and now the group is clearly ready to take the next step in expanding its jewellery business: it has its eyes set on Richard Mille, a fairly young brand of watches (founded 2011),considered to be one of the most expensive in the world.
For a Richard Mille you easily pay 60,000 euro, while the most expensive watch costs 1.3 million euro. Kering values the brand at 340 to 400 million Swiss francs, 2.5 to 3 times the expected sales for 2013.
Richard Mille rising star in watch sector
Kering would start with a share of 51 percent, with the possibility to expand it further in the future. The role of CEO would go to founder Richard Mille, who would become a minority shareholder.
Even in times of crisis, things are going smoothly for Richard Mille: the company was one of the biggest growers in the sector in 2012. Furthermore it is one of the most profitable companies in the “haute horlogerie” and it leaves companies as Swatch and Richemont far behind.
PPR now officially Kering and luxury holding
PPR, which stood for Pinault-Printemps-Redoute, evolved from a retail and mail order group to a luxury company with new assets such as Gucci, all under the leadership of founder and CEO François-Henri Pinault. In 2006 department store chain Printemps was sold and at the end of 2013 La Redoute will also change owners.
Pinault’s holding Artemis will remain 39 percent owner of Fnac, which is undergoing a renewal, for three more years. For every PPR-share in their portfolio shareholders get a Fnac-share.
The name Kering has already been approved by 99 percent of shareholders and with that the name change is official. It also emphasises the definitive change of course of the company towards luxury and sportive lifestyle brands.