Apollo is a leading global alternative investment manager with offices around the globe. It has assets under management of approximately £69 billion in private equity, credit and real estate funds. AURUM’s retail brands include Watches of Switzerland, Mappin & Webb, and Goldsmiths within its portfolio. The acquisition is expected to close in the first quarter of 2013 and is subject to customary closing conditions.
Sanjay Patel, head of international private equity for Apollo, said: “AURUM is a leader within the luxury watch retail industry and it has established an enviable position in the United Kingdom driven by exceptional service and customer experience and strong partnerships with most of the world’s major watch brands.
“We look forward to working closely with Justin Stead and his team to drive growth through enhancement of its leading market position in luxury watches and further development of its jewellery offering.”
Justin Stead, chief executive of AURUM, said: “We are pleased to have outperformed our own very high standards and those of our shareholder over the past three years, despite a very challenging economic environment.
“AURUM’s success is testament to the strength of our brands; the execution of a defined vision and strategy; committed world class partnerships; and the dedication of the entire AURUM team.”
Praising the work of chairman Don McCarthy, who is stepping down, Justin said he is confident that the business will continue to grow under its new ownership. “We are incredibly enthusiastic about Apollo’s acquisition of AURUM and we believe their retail industry expertise and broad resources and capabilities across the leisure and commodities sectors will foster our continued growth and success.”
Apollo was advised by DC Advisory for the purpose of raising the financing of the acquisition.