Isabel Marant has a new owner. Private equity firm, Montefiore Investment, has acquired a 51 percent stake in the French fashion label known for its effortless French wares – including tribal inspired garments and “’it” footwear. Founded in 1994, Isabel Marant, which is named after its founding designer, is estimated to generate annual sales of close to 200 million euros ($216 million), a source close to the company reported when acquisition rumors began swirling earlier this year.
While the terms of the deal are confidential, we do know that forty-nine percent of the brand’s capital remains in the hands of its original partners, Isabel Marant, Nathalie Chemouny and Sophie Duruflé, the label’s managing director. “They are still very much involved, both in terms of capital and management,” Henri Topiol, a principal at the French investment fund, told WWD. The deal marks Montefiore's first foray into fashion, as it portfolio currently includes budget hotel chain, B&B Hotels; auto broker Auto Escape; and marketing and opinion research firm, BVA.
Topiol said the plan is to develop the brand’s online and bricks-and-mortar networks: ““We’re convinced there is still room to grow in new territories, both geographically and in terms of product categories,” he continued. “Isabel Marant today is focused on ready-to-wear and shoes, and we believe that a brand of this stature could have an accessories range in the first stage and then maybe develop new categories — such as perfume or eyewear, or possibly men’s wear at some point. These are things we would like to explore.”