Sowind Group and PPR jointly announced today the launch of a reserved capital increase of Sowind Group that will be fully subscribed by PPR. PPR will then become the majority shareholder of Sowind with a 50.1 % stake. PPR already owned a 23% share based on a strategic partnership agreement signed in 2008 when Sowind was controlled by Luigi Macaluso, who passed away in October last year.
The transaction allows PPR’s Luxury Group to strengthen its presence in the haute horlogerie segment while supporting Sowind Group’s international development. Sowind Group includes Girard-Perregaux and JeanRichard. Under the agreement, Francois-Henri Pinault becomes Chairman of Sowind Group, alongside Monica Mailander Macaluso, who becomes Vice-Chairman.
Sowind Group, which is one of the last independent Swiss watchmaking manufactures, has a presence in 60 countries, namely with the Girard-Perregaux and JeanRichard brands.
François-Henri Pinault said: “This operation strengthens PPR’s Luxury Group in the high-end watchmaking segment thanks to the potential of such a prestigious brand as Girard-Perregaux. The transaction will support Sowind Group’s international growth as well as product development and worldwide distribution. This agreement is part of a longstanding business project defined with the Macaluso family, with whom we share an ambitious vision regarding the long-term growth prospects of the high-end watchmaking segment. In this regard, I’m glad to be able to count on Stefano Macaluso as General Manager of Girard-Perregaux and on Massimo Macaluso as General Manager of JeanRichard and Industrial development.”
Monica Mailander Macaluso adeed: “Our choice to see PPR play a bigger role alongside us is fully consistent with my husband’s decision in 2008 to consolidate a financial and managerial partnership that would give to an haute horlogerie house like ours the means to grow on the international market. For this reason, our direct involvement in [Sowind] Group’s management remains unchanged, just as our determination to provide our partners with the best know-how, as well in terms of technological innovation as regarding the definition of strategic guidelines for the creation, development and sale of products.”
Based in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Sowind Group is a holding company that includes Girard-Perregaux and JeanRichard, and also Sowind Manufacture, which develops and produces a complete portfolio of high-end watch movements (more than 100 variants) and collections of mechanical watches. Girard-Perregaux operates worldwide with 500 high prestige sales outlets and 11 boutiques.
PPR’s luxury brands include Gucci, Bottega Veneta, Yves Saint Laurent, Balenciaga, Boucheron, Sergio Rossi, Alexander McQueen, and Stella McCartney. The group’s sport and lifestyle brands include Puma, Volcom, Cobra, Tretorn and Electric.