MILAN (Reuters) -China’s Fosun Fashion Group has changed its name to Lanvin Group and could pursue acquisitions as its seeks to build a global portfolio of luxury brands, the company said Monday, while also announcing the arrival of new investors.
“We actually are quite open about the potential acquisition targets,” said Joann Cheng, chairwoman of Lanvin group, which in addition to French label Lanvin also controls Italian luxury shoemaker Sergio Rossi and high-end tailor Caruso, Austrian hosiery and underwear specialist Wolford and American womenswear brand St. John Knits.
The executive cited the group’s focus on high-end labels with heritage and a history of craftsmanship as a continued emphasis, but also indicated interest in new brands with strength in fashion technology, as well as Chinese labels that could complement the group’s existing brands.
“We are open to any good targets, we don’t have restrictions as to whether they are Western or Chinese, young or old – we’re open,” she said, noting that luxury labels have proven resilient during the COVID-19 crisis, thanks to demand from middle class consumers seeking a lift from high quality products.
Cheng declined to provide a value range for potential acquisitions targets, but noted the group is backed by its larger owner, the conglomerate Fosun International.
She noted plans to grow the group through retail expansion, e-commerce and expanding product lines.
Chinese shoppers are the biggest buyers of luxury goods worldwide and China also has its own fashion companies. But Chinese companies, including ones that have purchased established European labels, have so far found it hard to take off in Western markets.
Fosun Fashion Group, created by Chinese conglomerate Fosun International Limited in 2017, added it had two new strategic investors, Japanese trading conglomerate ITOCHU Corporation and luxury footwear manufacturer Stella International, as well as an investment from private equity firm Xizhi Capital.
(Reporting by Elisa Anzolin and Mimosa SpencerEditing by Louise Heaven and Mark Potter)