Image: Tom Ford

From the much-anticipated Farfetch, Yoox-Net-a-Porter deal, and Estée Lauder Companies reportedly beating out Gucci-owner Kering to snap up designer Tom Ford’s eponymous label in a deal that nabbed the title of the largest in the luxury space this year to a drastic restructuring of Patagonia to ensure the environmentally-focused company stays true to its roots, 2022 was filled with headline-making mergers and acquisitions (including in the tech and resale spaces), notable funding rounds, and legal actions in connection with at least one of those acquisitions. 

In TFL’s Year in Review, we took a look at some of the most noteworthy deals that took place in 2022 and a couple of related legal battles that came with them … 

Estée Lauder Takes Tom Ford 

One of the biggest high-end fashion consolidations this year will see Estée Lauder Companies acquire Tom Ford. Estée Lauder Companies confirmed in November that it would buy up the American fashion brand for $2.8 billion. The deal will see the cosmetics giant acquire Tom Ford’s fashion business, and its robust beauty, skincare, and fragrance arm, of course. Estée Lauder will continue Ford’s eyewear license with Marcolin, and amp-up its menswear license with Zegna to also include womenswear and accessories. 

Estée Lauder’s impending acquisition of the Tom Ford brand comes amid enduring changes in how companies approach the well-established practice of licensing. Over the years, luxury names, having built their businesses on leather goods and apparel, have relied on the likes of Coty, L’Oreal, Estée Lauder, and Puig, among others, to produce trademark-bearing fragrance and beauty collections, and/or to Marcolin, Marchon, Safilo, EssilorLuxottica, etc. in order to offer up logo-bearing eyewear. 

Farfetch Takes 47.5 Percent Stake in Rival YNAP 

Richemont and Farfetch confirmed a widely anticipated deal this summer that will see Farfetch acquire a 47.5 percent “non-controlling” stake in rival Yoox-Net-a-Porter. In exchange, Richemont will get a 10-11 percent stake in Farfetch and a $2.7 billion write-down. After the first stage of the tie-up, which is slated for the end of 2023, Richemont and Farfetch said that Farfetch will be able to “potentially acquire the remaining shares in YNAP.” 

We broke down the deal here, reflecting on the question of whether an ultimately-combined Farfetch and YNAP is a monopoly in the making. Chances are it is not. After all, while YNAP and Farfetch are the giants in their arena, there will always be a bigger player out there than even the two of them combined: Amazon. 

Lanvin Group IPO 

Lanvin Group announced in March that it would go public by way of a NYSE listing after it merges with SPAC Primavera Capital Acquisition Corp. in a move to raise up to $544 million. In a statement this spring, Lanvin Group asserted that “through the business combination” and subsequent listing – which took place on December 15, it is aiming “to catalyze growth” both from an acquisition perspective and as a result of “growth across Europe, N. America, and Asia.” 

The reality of LANV’s stock market debut on Dec. 15 was quite a bit lower than the figures it first set out in March, with the group – which consists of French fashion brand Lanvin, footwear brand Sergio Rossi, knitwear company St. John, hosiery-maker Wolford, and menswear company Caruso – raising $150 million at a valuation of $1.31 billion.

Patagonia Founder Gives Up Ownership 

In August, Patagonia underwent a drastic restructuring that saw founder Yvon Chouinard and his family transfer their $3 billion ownership stake to two newly created entities to up ante in terms of what the privately held company is doing to “address the environmental crisis.” The restructuring will help to “preserve the company’s independence and ensure that all of its profits – roughly $100 million per year – are used to combat climate change and protect undeveloped land around the globe.” 

As for the potential impact of Patagonia’s restructuring on the retail industry at large, it is likely limited, and chances are, few other U.S.-based companies will follow Patagonia’s lead.

A Trio of Resale Deals 

Consolidation came to the secondary market this year, with a trio of deals garnering headlines along with an array of funding rounds. In the biggest resale deal of the year: Korean conglomerate Naver Corp announced in Oct. that it would acquire resale platform Poshmark for $1.2 billion in a deal that values Poshmark at about $1.6 billion. 

Before that, French resale company Vestiaire Collective announced its plan to snap up U.S. resale co. Tradesy in order to “significantly increase the size and reach of” its peer-to-peer marketplace. And in a smaller but still noteworthy development, Goat Group acquired Grailed in an effort to grow its footprint in the secondary apparel market. 

You can find our full list of resale funding and M&A right here

This is a short excerpt from TFL’s 2022 Year in Review, which was published exclusively for TFL Enterprise subscribers, and which dives into everything from deals that further consolidated the retail and resale segments over the past year to the rise in ESG-centric actions from regulators and consumer plaintiffs – and the increasing adoption of web3 technologies by the fashion and luxuries goods industries in order to discern current trends and identify critical themes to watch for in 2023. Inquire today about how to sign up for an Enterprise subscription and gain access to all of our content.