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Diesel parent OTB confirms interest to acquire Jil Sander

By Don-Alvin Adegeest

19 Jan 2021

Jil Sander could soon return to Italian ownership as Only the Brave (OTB), the parent company of Diesel, confirmed interested in acquiring the house.

According to WWD, the due diligence process is already in progress, confirming the speculations from December that the Group’s founder Renzo Rosso was interested in the minimalist fashion house.

“It is true that we are evaluating various opportunities and companies currently on the market - OTB said in a statement. “We want to increase our critical mass and we want to do it in a modern and sustainable way, first of all by supporting and strengthening the supply chain, and in general the Made in Italy, as we have done throughout this pandemic, in line with the strategic vision of the group and of the our entrepreneur “.

Jil Sander is currently in orbit at Onward Holdings which took over the brand in 2008 from the private equity firm Change Capital Partners for 167 million euros. The namesake label was founded in 1968 by German designer Sander first sold in 1999 to the Prada Group. Prada sold the company one year after Raf Simons was appointed its creative head.

Currently the husband and wife Luke and Lucie Meier are in charge of Jil Sander’s creative direction and have restored the brand to its minimalist ethos while at the same time forging a new modernity and relevance that spoke to a new, younger audience.

In December, Onward Holdings sold its European subsidiary Onward Luxury Group, a move interpreted by the market as a signal of a potential change in strategy for the Japanese apparel giant.

OTB currently operates Diesel, Maison Margiela, Marni and Viktor & Rolf brands in addition to holding a minority stake in Amiri and distribution companies Staff International and Brave Kids. In 2019 Diesel accounted for 60 percent of the group’s 1.53 billion euro turnover.

Image by Nigel Shafran via jilsander.com