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LVMH-Sponsored PE Picks Up 25.5% In Genesis Luxury

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L'capital Asia, a private equity fund, sponsored by the world's largest luxury conglomerate Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessey (LVMH), has acquired a 25.5 per cent equity stake in Genesis Luxury, a high end luxury company that has been instrumental in marketing and distribution of brands such as Jimmy Choo, Botegga Veneta, Etro in India. This is the PE fund's first investment in the Indian market.

"The money will be used to introduce both domestic as well as international lifestyle brands into Genesis' existing portfolio", says Sanjay Kapooor, Managing Director Genesis Luxury. "These could vary from premium to fast-fashion or mid-scale brands", adds Kapoor.

Earlier this year L'Capital Asia announced a $640-million fund (Rs 2,600 crore), focussed on investments in areas such as consumer brands, beauty & wellness, boutique hospitality, media & entertainment, private education etc across emerging economies of China, India and other South Asian countries.

The group's focus on Asia comes after the region accounted for 25 per cent of LVMH's total revenue in 2010, surpassing both Europe and United States.

Owing to China's growth story the fund will divert a significant part of its investments to China, "We might be looking at investing close to 40 per cent of the fund's capital in China. India might come close to 30 % of equity infusion", added Danielle Piette, President and MD – L Capital. Other countries on the radar are Indonesia and Malaysia.

The company is in advanced talks with various players in the fashion, wellness and entertainment space to launch, market and distribute domestic as well as international aspirational brands, in India.

The PE firm is looking at an average investment of $25 million-$100 million, with minority stakes ranging from 10-14 per cent. "We are eyeing companies with revenues in the range of $50 - $500 million", added Ravi Thakran , Managing Partner L-Capital Asia. L'Capital Asia has already invested in five companies in South East Asia and China. L'Capital Asia, is the fourth fund from L'Capital and sponsored by LVMH. It's existing portfolio includes brands such as Charles and Keith, Gant,  Princess Yachts etc.

This comes as a favorable news to India's still nascent but growing lifestyle and luxury market, that will see entry of new high-end and mid-scale International brands.