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Aeffe reviews strategic avenues, options include delisting

Aeffe [BIT:AEF], an Italian fashion house, is exploring strategic options for the future direction of the business, including a potential delisting, four sources familiar with the situation told this news service.

The company has been considering a wide array of options over the past few months, especially off the back of interest from potential bidders, the sources said, however, it has not reached a conclusion about what option it will take.

A delisting has been among the possibilities under analysis, however, the owner and the management board is far from close to settling on any route, hence no mandates have been handed out, one of the sources said.

A spokesperson for Aeffe denied rumours about a potential delisting. 

The business is in the midst of a corporate reorganisation following two recent senior exits: long-time Moschino Creative Director Jeremy Scott, who for ten years led the group’s crown-jewel brand, and General Manager Stefano Secchi, who stepped down from the same brand last month.

Management’s focus will be on picking the right choice for Moschino’s next creative director, a selection that is in progress, as well as investing in supporting the new hire to keep up the momentum around the brand at a time when management relies so much on its success, a sector adviser said.

Following the exit, Aeffe's board announced the absorption of the company's wholly owned subsidiaries Moschino SpA and Aeffe Retail SpA as part of a corporate capitalisation and reorganisation process.

A change of direction could bring fresh funds and new growth opportunities at a time when its financials have been lagging, the sector adviser noted.

Last year, the group posted a EUR 9m loss as opposed to EUR 12m profit in 2021, according to its financials. EBIT went down from EUR 9.2m in 2021 to EUR 1.2m in 2022, according to the figures, while EBITDA rose somewhat to EUR 35.6m in 2022 from EUR 35.3m in 2021.

A slowdown in financial growth was also recorded by the group during the Covid-19 pandemic, as reported

Last year, Aeffe raised new debt with borrowing at EUR 127m by the close of 2022, according to the financials.

Aeffe, which operates the brands Alberta Ferretti, Philosophy by Lorenzo Serafini, Moschino and Pollini, has often been described as an attractive target to private equity firms, as reported.

The company was founded in 1998 by Alberta and Massimo Ferretti.