China Awards 2017 - Top Investors in Italy Transaction

06 Dec 2017

Gangtai's acquisition of Buccellati wins prestigious award

05 December 2017 - Gangtai's acquisition of Buccellati received the 'Top investors in Italy transaction' award at the China Awards 2017 ceremony held in Milan on 4 December. The annual event, promoted by the Italy-China Foundation, recognises Italian companies doing business in China and Chinese companies investing in the Italian market.

International law firm Simmons & Simmons advised Gangtai Group, a leading listed group from China, on the completion of its 85% stake acquisition of Buccellati Holding Italia S.p.A., a prestigious Italian luxury jewellery brand with close to 100 years of history. Buccellati was previously owned by Clessidra SGR S.p.A. and the Buccellati family.

The transaction , which completed in August 2017 moves Buccellati into one of the most prominent jewellery groups in China, with the potential to expand the brand globally.

Zhou Feng, vice chairman of Gangtai Holding, said: "On behalf of the Gangtai Group, I would like to thank the Italy-China Foundation for giving us this honour. The Buccellati Project has drawn a lot of attention from the government and economic trade circles of both countries. It has also received full support and help from all aspects during its implementation, which enabled us to successfully complete the closing of this project on August 1, 2017. As such, we have been able to promote the exchanges and communications of Sino-Italian culture and economic trading with practical actions.

At this stage, the Gangtai Group is increasing the investments in Buccellati, enhancing its product development capabilities and expanding its global sales network, so that more and more consumers around the world may come into contact with the cultural heritage and craftsmanship of Apennine. We believe that with the constant, deepening cultural exchanges between China and Italy, the Gangtai Group will join hands with more excellent Italian brands in the future to enter into the Chinese market, go on the global stage and make more contributions to the economic and trade development of both China and Italy."

Dario Spinella, Simmons & Simmons' lead partner for the transaction in Italy commented: "I am delighted that the Italy-China Foundation has awarded Gangtai on an acquisition where Simmons & Simmons acted as legal advisor. As we see further opportunities for growth in this space, we have established an Italy-China Desk including Hong Kong, and other Asian countries such as Singapore and Japan, focusing on both inbound and outbound activities in Italy and more generally across Europe."

Eric Lin, Simmons & Simmons' lead partner for the transaction in China added: "We are delighted to have advised Gangtai Group on this high profile Chinese M&A transaction in Italy. It was our sustained cross-border team efforts and its deep knowledge in managing Sino-European M&A deals that pushed this complex transaction over the line. We have a powerful international network with offices in Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, Singapore and Tokyo for the benefit of our clients and we are fully equipped to carry out cross border transactions like that of Gangtai-Buccellati.”

The Simmons & Simmons Italy-China team was led by partners, Dario Spinella, in Milan, Eric Lin, in Beijing, with assistance from senior associate Carlotta Robbiano and associate Paolo Guarneri (Milan) and associate Megan Wang (Beijing). Further advice was provided by partner Davide Sportelli and associate Ottavio Sangiorgio (employment law), partner Augusto Santoro (equity incentives) and managing associate Riccardo Rossi (financing).

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