Belgium-based D’Ieteren is acquiring a 41 percent stake in Milan-based Moleskine—a developer and seller of specialized notebooks, as well as writing, travel and reading accessories—and plans to launch a public takeover offer for the remaining shares.
D’Ieteren owns Belron, which in turn owns Safelite AutoGlass in the U.S.
“After closing of the transaction, and in accordance with Italian law, D’Ieteren will launch an unconditional mandatory takeover offer on the remaining shares of Moleskine,” according to D’Ieteren’s presentation about the deal.
The public offer does not rely upon an ownership threshold. However, if D’Ieteren gains the ownership, it intends to delist Moleskine from the Milan stock exchange, according to the company. Moleskine’s revenues grew from $59.46 million USD (€53 million Euro) in 2010 to $143.6 million USD (€128 million Euro) in 2015.
“Our wish is to delist Moleskine and support their ambitious plans to further develop a global aspirational lifestyle brand. Going forward, D’Ieteren will continue to invest in activities with growth potential while bringing support in areas where we can add value such as strategy, financial expertise and talent management,” says Axel Miller, CEO of D’Ieteren.
D’Ieteren will finance the initial investment capital from its $311.66 million USD (€277.8 million in Euro) cash position. The remaining investment will be financed through a combination of additional available cash and bank debt, according to the company.
“We are very happy to welcome Moleskine into the group,” says Roland D’Ieteren, chairman of the board of directors of D’Ieteren. “Since our establishment in 1805, we have always pursued a long-term vision combined with strong values. Moleskine represents these values perfectly and is a very promising company with strong growth potential and a highly talented management team.”
Arrigo Berni, CEO of Moleskine, says “We are absolutely thrilled to join the D’Ieteren group.”