Apr 14, 2023
LVMH announces acquisition of Platinum Invest jewelry group
Apr 14, 2023
On Thursday, the world's leading luxury group, LVMH announced the acquisition of a majority stake in Platinum Invest, which includes the companies Orest and Abysse, a "prominent French-based jewellery manufacturers." According to an official statement, LVMH closed the deal with Andera Partners, Bpifrance, and other shareholders, though the document did not disclose the transaction's financial details.
The deal will enable LVMH-owned jeweller Tiffany to "strengthen its production capacity in France and support its strong growth in fine jewellery," as stated by the group in the statement.
LVMH seldom discloses its brands' financial results, but during the group's annual results presentation, CEO Bernard Arnault emphasized that "Tiffany will exceed $1 billion in current operating income for the first time." Furthermore, this year, the brand will open a boutique on Fifth Avenue in New York.
The Orest group was founded as a designer and manufacturer of mid-range and entry-level jewellery in 1963 in Erstein, located in the lower Rhine region of Alsace, France. Over the years, it has progressively become one of the main players in jewellery production in Europe, supplying mainly luxury houses. In addition to manufacturing for other brands, Orest also produces its own jewellery such as rings, necklaces, bracelets and is a leader in wedding rings in France. Its expertise ranges from casting to milling, as well as more traditional tasks such as gem-setting and polishing.
In 2018, investors Andera Partners and Bpifrance acquired a majority stake in the SME, which had a turnover of 50 million euros at the time, and integrated it into the newly created holding company Platinum Invest. This operation boosted Orest's growth, which has since increased by more than 25% per year.
In 2022, Platinum Invest strengthened its position by acquiring Abysse, a high-end jewellery manufacturer founded in 1982 and a "French leader in the design and manufacture of fine jewellery". Abysse, renowned for its artisanal know-how, operates in both the ultra-high-end jewellery segment, designing and manufacturing unique pieces, and the high-end jewellery segment, producing series pieces and permanent collections. With this acquisition, Orest's turnover reaches nearly 140 million euros.
Platinum Invest currently boast a network of five workshops strategically located in the Est region of France and employs a workforce of nearly 800 artisans and personnel. According to LVMH, "These expert teams will leverage their skills to bring to life exceptional jewellery creations from the Tiffany & Co. design studio in New York."
"In addition to creating exceptional jewellery for Tiffany & Co, the workshops will continue to develop products for their existing customers, as well as for other jewellery houses within the LVMH group," said the group. It also noted that the training school developed by Orest, and subsequently by the Platinum Invest group, will also benefit from the affiliation with the LVMH Institute of Excellence in Crafts.
The acquisition of Platinum Invest "represents a significant milestone for our company and will allow us to strengthen our commitment to the highest level of quality, while expanding our production capacity to meet the growing demands of our customers," said Anthony Ledru, president and CEO of Tiffany & Co, as quoted in the statement.
The acquisition, which is subject to customary regulatory approvals, is expected to close before the end of summer 2023. The deal comes as LVMH's watch and jewellery division recently sold the Vendorafa Lombardi jewellery brand to Italian jeweller Gismondi 1754.
Dominique Muret (with AFP)
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