Qatari owned Italian fashion label Valentino has bid 500 million euro to acquire French competitor Balmain. The French brand had been looking for a new owner after its former owner passed away.
Valentino is not the only interested party: a Chinese group and an American investor have also expressed an interest in Balmain, according to French paper Les Echos. The heirs of deceased Alain Hivelin will decide on Thursday whether they will accept one of the bids, but Valentino is apparently the most likely to win as its bid is much higher than Balmain's estimated value, at 300 to 400 million euro valuations.
Balmain, founded in 1945, has been increasingly popular ever since Olivier Rousteing took over as creative director. It launched collaborations with H&M, Beyoncé and Rihanna and grew its turnover 3 times over the past 8 years, to 120 million euro.