The Rykiel family has agreed to sell 80 percent of Sonia Rykiel, the fashion brand known for its very French, striped knitwear, to Hong Kong-based investment group Fung Brands Ltd.
The brand's current president Nathalie Rykiel, will stay on as vice-chairman of the board. Sonia Rykiel had mandated Edmond de Rothschild Corporate Finance last summer to study the possibility of selling a minority stake in the family-owned house in order to speed its expansion. Eighty percent is obviously a more aggressive stake. Perhaps it will mark the beginning of an aggressive expansion of Sonia Rykiel.
Sonia Rykiel currently sells its products in over 30 countries, and its turnover in 2010 reached € 90 million. Its brands include the high-end ready-to-wear Sonia Rykiel, a contemporary range named Sonia by Sonia Rykiel, a children’s line named Rykiel Enfant, and a home furnishings line named Sonia Rykiel Maison.
Jean-Marc Loubier, former Céline and Louis Vuitton executive who is Fung Brands’ chief executive, said Sonia Rykiel fits the profile of “a very strong brand with a strong identity, but outside of Europe the company could be much stronger.”