* Ups stake in joint ventures to 75 pct from 50 pct
* Follows similar deal with Chinese partner Trinity
(Adds detail, background)
MILAN Jan 3 Italian shoemaker Salvatore
Ferragamo has raised its stake in distribution
companies operating in China as part of a strategy to strengthen
its position in Asia.
Ferragamo said on Thursday it had increased its stake in
distribution joint ventures with Imaginex Holdings and Imaginex
Overseas to 75 percent from 50 percent and renewed distribution
agreements until the end of 2019.
The move followed a similar deal with Chinese distribution
partner Trinity last year and points up the importance
for global luxury names of tightening their grip on distribution
and supply networks to boost profit.
European luxury companies such as Burberry, LVMH
and Prada have withstood the global slowdown
as demand from fast-growing China and other emerging markets
offsets wobbling sales in Europe and the United States.
The maker of shoes worn by Hollywood stars such as Angelina
Jolie and pop queen Lady Gaga already has more than 100 sales
points in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan.
Hong Kong-based Imaginex Group is controlled by Peter Woo
and his family. Woo has a 6 percent stake in Ferragamo.
(Reporting by Stephen Jewkes and Antonella Ciancio; Editing by