PARIS, Dec 14 (Reuters) - France’s PPR is considering using cash from the sale of its retail assets to invest in a new luxury goods brand, the Financial Times reported on Friday.
“We have been talking about investing in a new luxury name,” chief executive Francois-Henri Pinault said in an interview.
“We have no more young brands since Alexander McQueen and Stella McCartney have all passed the 100 million euros mark,” he added.
PPR’s last acquisition in the luxury and ready-to-wear sector was Italy’s Brioni in 2011. PPR has said it is interested in medium-sized, or 50-150 million euros, luxury brands to complete its portfolio, but this is the first time it has suggested it might consider building a new house, the paper said.
PPR is currently offloading its Redcats mail order unit in pieces and has announced plans to spin off its FNAC music and book unit, having sold its Conforama furniture arm last year.
Earlier this week PPR unveiled its first acquisition in China - a majority stake in fine jeweller Qeelin - and said more small deals could follow in the region, a key market for luxury goods.
In the FT interview, Pinault dismissed the idea that slowing growth in Chinese luxury consumption was a big problem for the industry.
“This is completely schizophrenic,” he said.
“If the U.S. grew at 5 percent a year we should be celebrating. There would be no fiscal cliff. But China slows to 7 percent and is it a disaster? No. I have no worries at all about its potential for development over the long term,” (Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Editing by Mark Potter)