Qatar’s Mayhoola for Investments has acquired French fashion house Balmain, a high-end brand popular among celebrities and known for its military-inspired style, in a deal reportedly worth around €500 million. The Balmain buy isn’t the first high-fashion purchase for Mayhoola, a vehicle backed by the emir of Qatar. In 2012, the fund acquired Italian fashion company Valentino from Permira in a transaction believed to be valued around €700 million.
Despite the hype around the Balmain deal, a look at the data on global PE activity in the apparel & accessories space overall seems to reveal waning investor interest. According to the PitchBook Platform, PE transaction volume in the sector has decreased each of the past three quarters, from 54 deals in 2Q 2015 to 35 during 1Q 2016. The current quarter is likely to follow the downward trend, too, as only 22 investments have been recorded so far since April 1.