July 17 (Bloomberg) -- Investcorp Bank BSC, a private equity firm with investments in Gucci and Saks Fifth Avenue among other luxury brands, signed an agreement to buy a 30 percent stake in Turkish fashion menswear retailer Orka Group.
The companies didn’t disclose the value of the transaction, which is subject to approval by Turkey’s antitrust board, according to an e-mailed statement in Istanbul today.
Investcorp, which had $12 billion of assets under management at the end of June, is making the acquisition through its Gulf Opportunity Fund and it’ll be the Bahrain-listed buyout firm’s third investment in Turkey, Mohammed Al-Shroogi, Investcorp’s president for Gulf business, said in a separate e-mailed statement today.
Last year, 46 mergers and acquisitions were done by private equity firms in Turkey, out of a total 241 deals in the country, Deloitte & Touche LLP said in January. BC Partners Ltd., Abraaj Capital Ltd. and the Carlyle Group LP are among international private equity firms that have invested in Turkey in recent years as companies seek to tap the country’s $772 billion economy, which grew 8.5 percent in 2011, the fastest pace among Group of 20 countries after China and Argentina.
Investcorp’s investment will help Orka to enter new markets and grow in Turkey, chairman Suleyman Orakcioglu said in the statement. Orka’s fashion products, which include brands such as Damat, Tween and D’S Damat, are sold in more than 250 stores in 40 countries, according to the statement.
Turkey’s organized luxury menswear market is about $7.4 billion and is expected to sustain its growth, according to the statement. Tiffany & Co., Chaumet, Breguet, Ebel and Carter’s are other brands that Investcorp has invested in, it said.
Orka Group has hired UniCredit Menkul Degerler AS, the Turkish unit of Unicredit SpA, to sell a minority stake and several bidders, including L Capital, a unit of the Paris-based luxury goods group LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA, are in talks, Unicredit Menkul chief executive Kaan Basaran said Jan. 13.
Investcorp’s first investment in Turkey was in Istanbul-based computer distributor Arena Bilgisayar Sanayi & Ticaret AS, whose 49.4 percent stake it acquired for $42.5 million in 2010 through its unit Redington Gulf, which it agreed to sell in February, spokesman Firas el-Amine said in a phone interview. Investcorp also bought a minority stake for $50 million in Tiryaki Agro, a producer and seller of wheat and pistachio products in southeastern Gaziantep, it said in September 2010.
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