Tuesday, March 20, 2007

FJ Benjamin Gets Exclusive Retail Rights For Celine South East Asia

South East Asia's prominent fashion and lifestyle group FJ Benjamin has today signed an agreement with Celine, part of French luxury group LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, appointing F J Benjamin as exclusive Celine retailer in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand from March 31.

Under the terms of the agreement, F J Benjamin will purchase existing Celine assets (comprising store improvements and inventory) in the four countries, conditional on payment of the purchase price on 30 March.

Benjamin will operate all seven Celine stores in the four countries beginning March 31/April 1. The agreement is for an initial term of seven years with possible renewal for an additional seven years.

Celine, a 61-year old French brand founded by Celine Viplana, has over 100 stores globally. It was acquired by the ARNAULT Group in 1987. LVMH’s drive to build Celine into one of its “Star” brands (along with other iconic labels such as Louis Vuitton, Dior and Fendi) is well underway particularly with the recent appointments of Serge Brunschwig, formerly Managing Director at Louis Vuitton, as President and CEO of Celine and Ivana Omazic as Creative Director.

Nash Benjamin, CEO of F J Benjamin, said: “Celine is a much loved and desired luxury brand that already has an established foothold in South East Asia. We look forward to our collaboration with LVMH to continue the expansion of the Celine legacy in the region. With F J Benjamin’s regional network and expertise, and track record for execution, we believe we are well placed to take on this brand at an exciting stage of its growth.”

Mr Benjamin noted that the acquisition is in line with F J Benjamin’s strategy of expanding its brand portfolio by representing iconic labels that offer opportunity for meaningful growth and scalability.

He added: “Financially, the Celine business is profitable so this is expected to translate into an immediate return on investment. Moving forward, LVMH and F J Benjamin have in place a strong long-term growth strategy for Celine which will see F J Benjamin developing several key Celine stores regionally.”

The Spring/Summer 2007 Ready-to-Wear and Accessories collection by Ivana Omazic for Celine are available now at all Celine stores worldwide.

*Photos courtesy of Style.com

Celine - UG3, Adorn Floor, Starhill Gallery, Jalan Bukit Bintang, 55100 Kuala Lumpur; Isetan KLCC, Ground Floor, Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur.

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