L Catterton Acquires Majority Stakes in Impresario Entertainment

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Consumer products & FMCG investor L Catterton will be securing controlling stakes in Impresario Entertainment and Hospitality. They have majorly been operating around brands comprising bars & restaurants like Smoke House Deli, Salt Water Cafe and the wildly popular, Social. In this new acquisition with an advisory assistance from Lodha Capital Markets, L Catterton is speculated to spend Rs 375 crore for 60-65% stake in the Mumbai-based organization in what could  conceivably be one of the biggest venture led investment round in India’s F&B industry till date.

Given this occasion, Impresario’s CEO Riyaz Amlani said, “We have been successful in pioneering several F&B brands in India and are thrilled to partner with L Catterton in the next leg of our journey. L Catterton specialises in consumer investing worldwide and have had significant experience and success building F&B brands such as Crystal Jade, Ce La Vi and Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen.”

The acquisition will be completed via auxiliary offer buys in the sequence of primary & secondary share purchases by L Catterton. The acquired company founded by restaurateur Riyaz Amlani today nets at around Rs. 350 Crores & although he’s offering a little piece of his holding on this deal, he however will hold a sizeable minority stake and keep on running the business as usual. Beacon Capital Partners & other shareholders who’re Impresario’s one of the largest shareholders combined, will be exiting together. They rake in the lion’s share of operating profits from the umbrella of brands such as Social & many others in the F&B space that have constantly been on an expansion spree lately across metropolis, given a surge in market demand.

L Catterton was constituted a year ago when a Paris based multinational luxury goods conglomerate – LVMH’s investment wing L Capital joined forces with the American consumer brands private equity firm Catterton Partners. L Capital had previously financed into Indian ethnic design retailer-company & seller Fabindia including multiplexes like PVR which have paid off profitably thus far. Besides, another Indian venture investment arm of theirs was associated with the design retailer Genesis Luxury which was sold off to Reliance Brands very recently.

L Catterton Asia’s Managing Partner & Chairman Ravi Thakran said, “We are delighted to partner with Riyaaz Amlani and Impresario Restaurants to build Social and Smoke House Deli into iconic food and beverage brands both in India and abroad. Social in particular is targeted at the millennials in India, which is an attractive and growing segment.” However, going by the historical trends of target companies & acquirers, buyouts by conventional private equity funds have not worked so good & in tandem with the food services that involves high capex, structurally flawed business models, too frequent experimental routines, promoter credibility and conflicts among passionate founders and their new investors, often leading to imploding financial returns and skirmishes.

Image Courtesy Details: Person in frame – Mr. Ravi Thakran, Managing Partner & Chairman, L Catterton Asia | Source: The Straits Times

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