PARIS – The investment fund HLD has entered into exclusive talks with the founders of Jimmy Fairly and Experienced Capital to acquire a majority stake in the French eyewear brand.
The terms of the deal were not revealed, but it is intended to help Jimmy Fairly “take a step forward in its development through a well-defined digital and in-store rollout strategy in France and abroad with the ambition of upscaling its European footprint and tripling its size by for five years, ”according to a statement released jointly by HLD, Jimmy Fairly and Experienced Capital.
Jimmy Fairly was founded a decade ago by Antonin Chartier and Sacha Bostoni to disrupt the eyewear industry. The company offers both sunglasses and corrective glasses designed and assembled in France in a sustainable way. Jimmy Fairly eyewear has prices starting at 99 euros and it is claimed to be significantly cheaper than the market average thanks to the company’s vertically integrated supply chain and exclusive distribution in own stores.
It has 58 stores in France and the UK as well as an e-commerce business. Jimmy Fairly is said to have the largest Instagram community of any eyewear manufacturer in France.
At the end of January 2017, investment firm Experienced Capital ventured beyond fashion and into new categories by buying a 43 percent stake in Jimmy Fairly. In the previous year, Jimmy Fair recorded sales of more than 6 million euros.
The brand has been able to post rapid growth and strong profitability since 2017 with support from Experienced Capital, according to the press release. The group has also focused on improving its offering and customer experience plus speeding up its digital strategy and rolling out bricks and mortar.
“We are convinced that the company is ideally positioned to establish itself as the leading affordable luxury eyewear brand, not only in France but also abroad,” said Jean-Bernard Lafonta, partner and co-founder of HLD Europe.
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