Bridgepoint acquires Italian perfumery group Limoni


Perfumery chain Limoni, the Italian market leader with a network of 400 stores and a consolidated turnover of € 304 million (13.6% up on 2004), has been acquired by Bridgepoint through a management buy-out involving its founder Piofrancesco Borghetti.

The transaction has seen Mr Borghetti increase his stake in the company from 20.3% to 30% and Bridgepoint acquire 70% from former shareholders De Agostini Group, Gianfilippo Cuneo, Interbanca, Banca Intesa and Isabella Seragnoli. The consideration was not disclosed.

"I wish to express my gratitude to former shareholders for their commitment in the last five years" said Mr Borghetti. "This allowed the company to become Italian market leader within its sector."

"From now on," he added, "our aim, together with Bridgepoint, is to consolidate our business market position and to pursue further growth opportunities through new openings and acquisitions in Italy and abroad. In 2006, we expect to open 60 new perfumeries and we estimate our consolidated turnover will reach € 360 million. "

Limoni currently runs 400 stores in Italy and 16 stores in Croatia and in Slovenia.

Guido Belli, partner responsible for Bridgepoint's investment activities in Italy, said: "Limoni has a proven management team, a profitable format and it is ready to grow further. Furthermore, Bridgepoint itself has a proven track record in retail and has specific know-how in the perfumery sector through its investment in French perfumery chain Nocibé which it sold in December 2005. Under Bridgepoint management for three years, Nocibé's turnover increased by 30% to € 460 million and the number of stores rose from 285 to 359."

Debt for the transaction was provided by ING, BNP Paribas and Banca Intesa.

Bridgepoint was advised by: Rothschild (M&A and debt advisory), NCTM (legal), Camozzi & Bonissoni (tax), KPMG, Boston Consulting Group (Market due diligence) and Marsh; vendors were advised by: Marena, Bonvicini, Aghina, Ludergnani (legal); Piofrancesco Borghetti was advised by Gianni, Origoni, Grippo & Partners (legal) and by Studio Gnudi.

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