Qatar buys fashion house Valentino

Bidder and value of deal not disclosed

A Qatari investment group has agreed to buy Italian fashion house Valentino for an undisclosed amount, private equity firm Permira said on Thursday.

"Mayhoola for Investments SPC, an investment vehicle backed by a major private investor group from Qatar, has agreed to acquire Valentino Fashion Group SpA," said Permira, which has a controlling interest in the group.

"The sale and purchase agreement between Mayhoola and Red & Black, a company indirectly controlled by the Permira Funds in partnership with the Marzotto family, was signed on 11th July 2012."

Permira did not disclose the identity of the Qatari bidder nor the value of the deal.

Valentino makes fashion clothes and accessories.

However, British media recently reported that Qatar's ruling family was in advanced talks to buy the fashion label for about £550-600 million (700-755 million euros, $850-930 million).

"We are delighted with this development," added Valentino chief executive Stefano Sassi in Thursday's statement.

"During the past few years, despite swings in the luxury markets, the company has operated with great intensity and remained focused on maximizing the potential of the Valentino brand.

"This effort should drive a 60-percent increase in revenues from 2009 to 2012. Our new shareholder will help us to reach our full potential."

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