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A timeline of fashion's mergers, acquisitions and luxury financing in 2023

By Don-Alvin Adegeest


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Handshake Credits: Pexels

In 2023 the fashion industry experienced no shortage of funding. Despite challenges such as inflation, economic fluctuations, and geopolitical uncertainties, there was a high investor appetite for shares in luxury, e-commerce platforms, and brands promising substantial returns on investment.

November & December

Two notable deals centered around Farfetch. The first, announced in November, involved a 1.15 billion dollar merger aligning Swiss luxury group Richemont, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, and Farfetch. However, just weeks later, this deal was abandoned when South Korean Coupang acquired Farfetch for 500 million dollars.

Several significant mergers and acquisitions (M&A) took place in the USA during 2023. The long-anticipated listing of German shoe giant Birkenstock on the New York Stock Exchange in November valued the company at 8.3 billion dollars. In August, Tapestry, the US Group operating Kate Spade, Coach, and Stuart Weitzman, announced the acquisition of Capri Holdings, the parent company of Versace and Jimmy Choo, in an 8.5 billion dollar deal.

In December, Givenchy announced parting ways with creative director Matthew Williams. However, this did not deter Hong Kong billionaire Adrian Cheng from acquiring a majority stake in Williams' label, 1017 Alyx 9SM, on November 30th, with the investment aimed at fueling the brand's expansion in key markets.

Kering also made major moves in November, completing the acquisition of a 30 percent shareholding in Valentino.

Frasers Group showcased its commitment to becoming a leading UK player through two major acquisitions in 2023. In June, it acquired a 5 percent stake in Boohoo, later increasing it to 16.5 percent. In December, the group acquired luxury retailer Matches for 52 million pounds from Apax Partners, aiming to strengthen its position in the higher fashion segment.


Chinese fast fashion giant Shein filed for an IPO in the US in November and acquired UK brand Missguided from Frasers in October. In October, India's Reliance Retail announced the acquisition of Superdry's licenses and brand assets in three Asian countries for 40 million pounds.

British clothing company Next continued its acquisition spree, announcing the acquisition of lifestyle brand FatFace for 115.2 million pounds in October.


August was a busy month for investors. Firstly, Rolex made headlines by acquiring the luxury watchmaker Bucherer for an undisclosed sum. Simultaneously, Forever 21 and Shein announced a collaborative effort to acquire approximately 30 percent of Sparc Group. Sparc operates Forever 21 and is a joint venture between Authentic Brands Group (Authentic) and the US retail property giant Simon Property Group.

Additionally, August saw JD Sports making significant acquisitions. The company acquired the remaining 40 percent stake in MIG, a Polish retail chain. This acquisition marked a strategic step for JD Sports, allowing them to strengthen their presence in Central and Eastern Europe through new store openings and increased investment in omnichannel capabilities.


In July, Swiss luxury group Richemont secured a majority ownership stake in the Italian shoemaker Gianvito Rossi. During the same month, Kering acquired a 30 percent interest in Valentino, in a transaction valued at 1.87 billion dollars. The official statement outlined that the agreement includes an option for Kering to acquire the entire share capital of Valentino by 2028.

Also in July, Kim Kardashian secured 270 million dollars in a series C funding round for her brand, Skims, which is valued at 4 billion dollars. The shapewear company expressed intentions to utilise the funds to address inventory management challenges and enhance competitiveness against other market offerings.


In June, Authentic Brands Group (Authentic) raised 500 million dollars, leading to a valuation exceeding 20 billion dollars. Authentic said it plans to use the funds for global expansion, diversifying across categories, engaging with license partners, exploring new geographies, and expanding distribution channels. During the same month, Authentic acquired the intellectual property of the British heritage brand Hunter, known for its iconic rubber Wellington boots, in a deal estimated to be worth around 125 million dollars.

Frasers Group also made strategic moves in June by increasing its stake in Asos to 10.5 percent, nearly doubling its initial investment of 5.5 percent.


May witnessed Shein raising 2 billion dollars in a funding round, co-led by Sequoia Capital, General Atlantic, and the U.A.E. sovereign wealth fund Mubadala.

In the same month, Marks & Spencer announced additional financial support for Nobody’s Child, an environmentally conscious fashion brand in which it acquired a 27.5 percent stake in 2021.

Meanwhile, the UK-based discount platform Secret Sales successfully raised 10 million dollars in a Series B round, with plans to use the funds for expansion in Europe.

Additionally, in May, JD Sports executed a strategic move as part of its plan to become a global force in fashion and sports retail. The company acquired French retailer Groupe Courir, which operates 313 stores across six countries. This acquisition aligns with JD Sports' elevation strategy.


In April, Vince Holding Corp and Authentic Brands Group (Authentic) established a strategic partnership, valued at 76.5 million dollars in cash. This partnership involved Authentic acquiring Vince's intellectual property, now rebranded as Authentic Vince.

During the same month, Authentic further expanded its portfolio by acquiring Boardriders, a prominent sports and lifestyle company with several brands, including Quiksilver, Roxy, and Billabong.

In a complex transaction, Walmart in April divested its Bonobos menswear business to the high street giant Express and WHP Global for 76 million dollars.


Next acquired Cath Kidston in March after the latter fell into administration for the second time in two years. As part of the deal, Next will acquire the brand name, domain names and intellectual property. It will not acquire the four stores, which will be sold off once stock is sold.

Also in March, DressX, a virtual wardrobe featuring exclusively digital garments, NFT fashion items, and augmented reality outfits, secured 15 million dollars in funding through a Series A round


Brand Machine Group (BMG) acquired the British tailoring brand Peckham Rye in February. The esteemed tailor, established in the London neighborhood from which it takes its name in 1795, had been purchased by BMG, a corporation managing licensed labels and owning various trademarks.

In another notable transaction, Wolverine World Wide Inc. divested the Keds brand to Designer Brands, a shoe retailer. As part of this agreement, the financial terms were not disclosed, and Designer Brands was granted an exclusive license for Hush Puppies footwear in the United States and Canada.


January marked Spatial Labs raising 10 million dollars in seed funding for next-gen technologies connecting brands with younger demographics.

Mergers and acquisitions