Majors

LVMH, Tiffany & Co. Make It Official

MajorsNov 25, 2019

LVMH, Tiffany & Co. Make It Official

The French luxury titan acquired the iconic American jeweler in a $16.2 billion deal.

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The Tiffany & Co. flagship store on Fifth Avenue, set to undergo renovations after the holidays. The jeweler was acquired by luxury conglomerate LVMH in a deal valued at $16.2 billion.

Paris—LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton scooped up Tiffany & Co. over the weekend in a deal valued at $16.2 billion, the luxury titan announced Monday.

The acquisition brings the American jeweler under LVMH’s umbrella, adding to stable of high-powered brands that already includes Bulgari, TAG Heuer and Hublot.

LVMH expects the addition of Tiffany to strengthen its position in the jewelry market and bolster its presence in the United States, the company said in a press release about the acquisition.

Rumors of a potential deal began rumbling last month, prompting Tiffany to confirm it had received an unsolicited bid for $120 per share, valuing the company at $14.5 billion.

Tiffany reportedly entered preliminary discussions with LVMH and asked the company to up the bid, which it raised to $130 per share.

The final deal was for $135 per share, or $16.2 billion, one of the largest transactions in LVMH’s history.

Founded in 1837 by Charles Lewis Tiffany, the first Tiffany store opened in downtown Manhattan. The luxury brand slowly built an empire, expanding to more than 300 stores across the globe.

LVMH CEO Bernard Arnault described the retailer as having “an unparalleled heritage and unique position in the global jewelry world.”

Flavio Cereda, an equity analyst at Jeffries, stated in a note prior to the deal announcement that Tiffany’s “brand equity and the strength of the image of its iconic 1837 Blue Box are more valuable than the current financials suggest.”

Cereda said LVMH can leverage these to target the Asian millennial market, which would mean a “rethinking of the current product mix and its U.S. footprint, in our view.”

Tiffany CEO Alessandro Bogliolo noted the company has been striving for “sustainable, long-term growth” and said the acquisition will “provide further support, resources and momentum for those priorities as we evolve toward becoming the next generation luxury jeweler.”

The boards of directors of both companies have approved the transaction. Tiffany’s board recommended its shareholders give it the green light as well.

The deal is expected to close mid-2020 and is subject to approval from Tiffany’s shareholders, regulatory approval, and other customary closing conditions.

Citi and J.P. Morgan serve as financial advisors to LVMH while New York-based law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom serves as legal counsel.

Centerview Partners and Goldman Sachs are Tiffany’s financial advisors and New York-based law firm Sullivan & Cromwell serves as legal counsel.

Lenore Fedowis the associate editor, news at National Jeweler, covering the retail beat and the business side of jewelry.

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