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Wed 30 Sep 2009 08:23 PM

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Ajman sheikh in driving seat for Lacroix takeover

UPDATE 2: Potential rival bidder for loss-making French fashion house drops out.

Italian investment group Borletti said on Wednesday it would not make a firm offer for loss-making French fashion house Christian Lacroix, clearing the way for a bid from a Gulf investor.Lacroix's administrator had earlier described the offer from Hassan bin Ali al-Nuaimi, a nephew of the ruler of Ajman, part of the UAE, as "overall very satisfactory".

"We are close to reaching a solution with the sheikh of Ajman....generally speaking, it's very satisfactory," administrator Regis Valliot told Reuters.

Meanwhile, Borletti, led by Italian businessman Maurizio Borletti, said despite studying the offer for three months "the conditions for confirming this takeover were not brought together."

Borletti owns the Rinascente and Printemps department stores in Italy and France - which sell fashion items from designers.

Christian Lacroix was once part of French luxury goods group LVMH but now belongs to the Falic family, which owns US retail group Duty Free Americas.

The company behind the designer known for his baroque and embroidered dresses has never made a profit in 22 years of trading.

In 2008, the company made a loss of 10 million euros ($14.57 million) on revenues of 30 million euros, while orders for its 2009 women's ready-to-wear summer collection were down 35 percent.

Valliot said al-Nuaimi's offer envisaged a 70 million euro capital injection into the Christian Lacroix company and keeping all employees. Lacroix himself was involved in the talks.

Al-Nuaimi faces rival proposals from France's Bernard Krief Consulting (BKC) and the Financiere Saint-Germain holding company which owns the Daum and Lalique crystalware firms. (Reuters)

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Leo 10 years ago

Had they spend the same time or a bit less of it every year on Ajman's problems, the city would have been a much better place to live today!

ahmed 10 years ago

dont we need power and water first in Ajman?where are the priorities?