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LVMH wants to buy the American jeweler Tiffany (source close)

The world luxury giant LVMH wants to acquire the American jeweler Tiffany, famous for its engagement rings, told AFP in the night from Saturday to Sunday a source familiar with the matter.

The group of French billionaire Bernard Arnault, owner of Louis Vuitton, Dior and Champagnes Veuve Clicquot and Moet & Chandon, made an offer earlier this month to the jeweler, said this source on condition of anonymity.

Tiffany has not yet responded to this proposal, which comes as the luxury industry fears the consequences of trade tensions between the United States and China on demand.

The US group, whose growth is hampered by the strong dollar and lower spending by tourists, has surrounded large banks to advise on these advances LVMH, said the source, confirming information Bloomberg News.

It did not reveal the amount proposed by LVMH, warning however that it was not assured that these discussions result in a transaction.

The group's market capitalization, known for its engagement and wedding rings, was close to $ 11.90 billion at the Wall Street closing on Friday.

Tiffany recorded a 6.5% increase to 6.5% in sales in its last fiscal year.

Contacted by AFP, LVMH did not respond immediately.

“We refuse to comment on rumors and speculation,” said a spokesman for Tiffany.

A takeover of Tiffany by LVMH would be one of the largest acquisitions of the French group, present in various sectors of activity, ranging from fashion to wines and spirits through perfumes, cosmetics and selective distribution (Sephora).

The talks between the two companies comes just days after the inauguration of a Louis Vuitton plant in Texas by Arnault, accompanied by US President Donald Trump and his daughter Ivanka.

An acquisition of Tiffany would strengthen LVMH in jewelry, where its Bulgari brand, bought for $ 5.2 billion in 2011, faces Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels, both owned by the Swiss group Richemont.

It could also enable LVMH to boost its growth in the United States, its second largest market in terms of revenue after Asia, and at the same time limit the negative effects of trade tensions that threaten the demand for luxury goods. in China.

The pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, which have lasted for several months, also put demand at risk.

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