British couture brand Ralph & Russo has sold a minority stake to Dutch investment company Tennor Holding BV for $50 million. Tennor, which also owns La Perla, didn’t say how big its current holding is, but it has an option to increase the stake to 40%.
London-based Ralph & Russo, which employs 350 people in the UK, has until now been privately owned by founders Tamara Ralph and Michael Russo. The nine-year-old business is a rarity in British fashion and was the first UK member in almost a century to be accepted by the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture.
Tennor said that its $50million investment “is made within the same luxury fashion investment theme as [its] investment in La Perla Global Management [and] covers the funding requirements Ralph & Russo needs to accelerate its existing global growth plans.”
It means that Pascal Perrier, a fashion industry veteran and CEO of La Perla UK, will be joining the board of Ralph & Russo in a non-executive advisory capacity, but the fashion house will remain as a fully independent company, led by the existing management team.
Tennor, which has an HQ in London, rebranded only this May and was previously known as Sapinda Holding, the name under which it acquired La Perla early last year.
Robin Bagchi, CEO of Tennor, said: “We are delighted to be able to provide Ralph & Russo with the funding required. We share the brand’s entrepreneurial spirit and passion for luxury, and believe this investment is complementary to our existing holding in La Perla UK and look forward to working with Tamara Ralph and Michael Russo.”
Perrier added that the designers “have done a phenomenal job at creating one of the world’s top luxury fashion brands in a short space of time. I fully support the founders’ strategy and look forward to being a part of Ralph & Russo’s continued success story.”
And Michael Russo said the partial sale is “an important step in allowing Ralph & Russo and our team to realise our long-term growth plans whilst keeping the brand privately owned and managed.”
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