Samsonite acquires Italian retail firm to expand direct sales

PUBLISHED : Friday, 02 October, 2015, 9:25am
UPDATED : Friday, 02 October, 2015, 12:05pm


Samsonite International, the world’s largest luggage maker, has paid Euros 8.5 million for Chic Accent, which operates 31 leased premium accessories, handbags, and travel luggage shops in shopping malls in Italy.

“The acquisition provides the company with a significant retail footprint in attractive mall locations in Italy, which will enable the company to further expand its direct-to-consumer business in Italy,” Samsonite said in a filing to Hong Kong’s stock exchange on Friday. “The acquisition also advances the company’s goal of expanding its presence in non-travel categories such as accessories, handbags and business products.”

Samsonite has added 130 company-operated retail stores in the 12 months to June 30, according to its interim report.

Chic Accent had net sales of Euros 15.2 million last year, 10.1 per cent higher than the previous year, Samsonite said, adding the deal was completed on September 30.

The company sourced 80 per cent of its total sales revenue from wholesaling in the year’s first six months, compared to 19.7 per cent from retailing and 0.3 per cent from licensing.

Chief executive Ramesh Tainwala said in August the economic slowdown and currency devaluation on the mainland would not hurt its business, as mainland tourists, a main driver for its growth, continue to rise even as many have shifted their destinations from Hong Kong and the United States to countries with more favourable currencies.

Its net profit fell 2.7 per cent year-on-year to US$94.4 million in the year’s first six months, but it grew 8.9 per cent when foreign currency fluctuations are excluded.

The firm is forecast to post a 16.2 per cent rise in net profit to US$216.45 million for the whole of this year, and rise a further 15.4 per cent next year, according to the average estimate of 18 analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.