Aeffe Rules Out Sale Amid Renewed Investor Interest in Luxury

Aeffe SpA (AEF), the owner of the Moschino fashion brand, ruled out selling a stake any time soon, joining rivals such as Cavalli Group in rebuffing interested suitors.

“We aren’t for sale,” Aeffe Executive Chairman Massimo Ferretti said in an interview in Moscow today. The San Giovanni-in-Marignano, Italy-based company is focused on growing without seeking funds in this way “for the moment,” he said.

The luxury market will continue to consolidate as financial investors seek to tap rising demand in fast-growing economies and large luxury groups seek to benefit from scale, according to Sanford C. Bernstein analyst Mario Ortelli. Industry buyers, wealthy families and private-equity firms are scouring the industry for deals, Cavalli CEO Gianluca Brozzetti said last month, ruling out a sale of the maker of $2,305 rayon jackets.

Gianni Versace SpA said June 22 it expects to decide as soon as October if it will sell a minority stake publicly or privately to fund growth. Worldwide luxury sales will rise as much as 5 percent this year as booming demand in Southeast Asia offsets a slowdown in China and Europe, Bain & Co. estimates.

Aeffe makes fashion and accessories under the Alberta Ferretti, Moschino, Pollini, Emanuel Ungaro and Cedric Charlier brands. In 2012, earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization reached 22.8 million euros ($30 million) on revenue of 254 million euros. Sales fell 2 percent in first quarter of this year.

The company is investing more in brands such as Ungaro, while shoemaker Pollini is growing “a lot,” Ferretti said. “That means that for us it starts to be a very good moment. It’s not a moment for sale,” even as Aeffe receives approaches.

To contact the reporter on this story: Andrew Roberts in Paris at aroberts36@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Celeste Perri at cperri@bloomberg.net

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