Livingstone Partners acted as exclusive corporate finance advisor to Inspecs Group plc (“Inspecs”) on the acquisition of Ego Eyewear (“Ego”) from their respective owner manager.
Ego is an eyewear design and licensing company and uses third party eyewear manufacturers to produce premium fashion brands. Its prestigious design house is based in Stockholm, and it also has operations in London, Osaka and Hong Kong. Ego’s licensed brands include Barbour, Liberty of London, Viktor & Rolf, Lyle & Scott, Henry Lloyd and Joseph, and Nordic brands Ivana Helsinki, Valerie and Day. Ego’s main distribution channel is through major optical chains. The company is run by second generation eyewear veterans Ronald and Johanna Gezang, who are known for their innovative and creative designs. Ego’s strong brand portfolio will further expand and complement Inspecs’ existing brand portfolio and add to its Scandinavian offering.
Inspecs was founded in the UK in 1988 by Robin Totterman and is a multinational designer, manufacturer and distributor of spectacle frames and lenses. The group produces a wide range of optical sunglasses and safety frames on branded and OEM basis. Inspecs is thus one of the few suppliers able to offer its customers (which include international optician and retail chains as well as distributors and independent opticians) such a one-stop solution. The company’s distribution network spans 80 countries, includes about 30,000 sales outlets, and has subsidiaries in the UK, Portugal, Scandinavia, the US and China, as well as production facilities in Vietnam, China, the UK and Italy.
“We are very pleased with the continuing support from Livingstone helping us to execute our M&A strategy at a fast pace” says Chris Kay, CFO of Inspecs Plc. “Due to Livingstone’s comprehensive buyside M&A support as well as their industry expertise we were able to execute two transactions in two different jurisdictions in parallel in a highly expedite manner.”
Michael Westhoven, Partner at Livingstone Düsseldorf, comments: “We are very pleased to be able to further support Inspecs in its continuing growth through M&A and we feel very privileged to be part of this success story”.