Luxury crystal and jewellery maker Baccarat is to sell the 88.8 per cent stake currently owned by its majority shareholders to Chinese investment group Fortune Fountain Capital, valuing the French company at €185m.
In a statement on Friday Baccarat – which is part of the Groupe du Louvre company – said it had signed an irrevocable undertaking with the Chinese group, backed by Starwood Capital and Catterton, Baccarat’s majority shareholders. The offer is worth €222.70 a share.
Starwood, the US hotel group, owns 66.6 per cent of Baccarat, acquired as part of its 2005 takeover of champagne house Tattinger. Catterton Partners, a US private equity group, took a stake in Baccarat in 2012.
In a statement on Friday Baccarat said it would use the sale to “accelerate its strategic plans internationally, particularly in Asia and the Middle East, while supporting its growth in developed markets.
It said final approval would need the go-ahead of Chinese authorities.
As part of the deal, Daniela Riccardi, current Baccarat general manager, “will continue to lead the company during this new chapter” the statement said.
Baccarat said the Chinese group had given undertakings to “honour the 250-year old heritage” of the crystal manufacturer.
The company traces its roots to a decision by King Louis XV of France to grant permission for a glassworks in the town of Baccarat in Lorraine region of eastern France.
Production initially focused on window panes, mirrors and stemware until 1816 when the first crystal oven when into production.