L Capital’s LVMH-Like Model For India is Still Unclear

The Private Equity (PE) arm of  Paris-based LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton – L Capital with Ravi Thakran at the helm of affairs gave a lot of hope to the Indian Fashion Fraternity to see ‘corporatisation’ of Indian Fashion Industry. Ravi Thakran being an Indian led the Desi fash-frat to unjustifiably believe that L Capital with a corpus fund of $ 650 Million would really see some huge investment in Indian Designer Labels. But as I mentioned – it was an‘unjustifiable’ expectation.

L Capital heavily invested in Genesis Luxury and took 25.5% stake in the company. Here I must say that Sanjay Kapoor of Genesis Luxury who is a former banker must have used his financial expertise to secure that huge chunk of investment from L Capital. Other brand where L Capital picked up stakes was Fabindia – L Capital holds 8% stake.

Finally L Capital turned its focus to the niche segment of Indian designer-wear. The reports of L Capital investing in Rohit Bal and Sabyasachi Mukherjee and in multi-designer retail chain – Evoluzione still stands unconfirmed. The talks are in final stages is what we still hear. This news sparked off various unconfirmed reports that Sabyasachi’s brand has been valued much higher than that of Rohit Bal’s and why Evoluzione and why not Ensemble. Ravi Thakran and Rohit Bal are old friends and when Thakran was heading Omega Watches, he sponsored a grand show of Bal’s at the American Ambassador’s (The Lundquists!) residence where Shahrukh Khan was the show-stopper. Murmurs of L Capital investing in Rohit Bal because Thakran and Bal are buddies had been floating but I personally discount it as gossip as PE firm of L Capital’s stature don’t do business on the basis of friendship. Gossip on why Evoluzione and why not Ensemble has many conspiracy theories.

But it’s high time L Capital comes out with a status report on what’s happening with the investments in Rohit Bal, Sabysachi Mukherjee and Evoluzione. Also how significant is the news that L Capital is planning to replicate the LVMH model in India? This is what I am reading –  “Along with consolidating their separate labels under a single corporate structure, each of them will get a chance to scale up and reach domestic as well as global markets. L Capital plans to invest close to Rs 200 crores in the venture, which is being planned as a company that will own significant minority stakes in the design houses of these well-known designers and will forge a joint venture with Evoluzione for back-end distribution business. Gradually, more known designers will be brought on board to expand the business horizons.” Well if this happens I feel it is something the Indian designers always needed and it will definitely be an impetus to the desi designers.  If LVMH-type structure comes up in India, it would definitely assist in consolidating and projecting Indian fashion to the world, besides helping brands with marketing, retailing and identifying suitable real estate to increase scale, pare costs, improve operating efficiency and boost profits.

By the way – L Capital recently invested Rs 108 crores in PVR Cinemas! So is Bollywood next on L Capital’s  Agenda???


15 Replies to “L Capital’s LVMH-Like Model For India is Still Unclear”

  1. angelito tan says:

    Wow.. I know of L Capital’s Ravi Thakran as a risk taker but it is quite nornal that he is know to generate good PR with promises and stories like this. I remember this LVMH plan when I visited India in 2005. Get over it!

  2. Jaideep says:

    Ravi Thakran another Rajat Gupta in the making. What the he’ll is LVMH doing as he and his old Omega gang openly loot the company!

  3. Concetta says:

    The LVMH group has ben ignoring how in his various stints Ravi Thakran has been building his own wealth through his China partnerships. He has beem seen carrying cards with different designations claiming he manages all LVMH brands for South East Asia 8 years ago when he has been only in charge of Tag India. He works with the set of boys- at least 2/3 of his former GMs and PR girl have worked with him for over 11 years. Very good at managing his French bosses.

  4. alexia says:

    so finally someone gets the dirt out. Someone should investigate Thakran’s assets. On the Board of Sincere, PVR, Emaar, maybe GVK (a while ago). Has never tuned around any business NEITHER omega nor Tag Heuer- just used the LVMH platform to build business relationships for his own good. Followed by his loyal bunch of soldiers – at least 3 are on the L Cap team

  5. gayatri says:

    All these announcements are to keep him in the limelight and cover up his clandestine parallel and money making rackets using the LVMH platform. Check out his lavish house with pool in Sentosa and tell me if a 300 USD per annum earning exec in fashion could afford that! somebody needs to think about it.

  6. xavi says:

    During omega days seems his poor successor Kannan inherited huge financial misappropriations. Ravi had used store budgets for marketing and spent money on mega bollywood endorsed ads.

  7. genevieve says:

    DLF already pointed out when he was parallely working with EMAAR when he was still with TAG and even built a team in Singapore with this guy from Amsterdam Uday. But then luck favored him and he went back and managed L Capital thanks to Concetta Lanciaux! Oh boy seems like his old team is coming out with these things on him.

  8. chemmne weber says:

    You guessed right. This is an ex Swatch/ LVMH reunion of sorts. Time someone exposed this guy. Power crazy and smooth operator. Wish he used his brains to turn around sales. He hasn’t delivered on sales but used LV for his marketing ideas and self glorification.

  9. Shantanu says:

    Nobody can teach you career management the way Ravi Thakran does. He is the only indian manager who has the French centric LVMH wrapped around his fingers. Very shrewd, great networker, power broker. Success comes at a cost. And we all know luxury particularly watch business was built on the parallel trade.

  10. Maya hari says:

    As a wife of one of his loyal employees one always worried about being found out! Sales were shown in india but actually his contacts with duty free players would see real sales in Singapore or vietnam.

  11. Pooja says:

    The blogger needs to write a blog on these revelations. Seems like for the first time people are coming out on him. Many skeletons in Ravi Thakrans Lcapital closet. He is now busy trying to get the duty free business in airports outside Mumbai. He got Mumbai by changing bid numbers with GVK support

  12. jack says:

    Yes I am planning to compile all the comments and write one but before that I am verifying all the info from my end…

  13. chetan says:

    Nobody will talk. He is very powerful at this stage and the guy in Swatch who would talk has retired. Don’t get yourself into trouble. He will come after you,

  14. julia says:

    He is not trustworthy

  15. julia says:

    And now to top it all he has dumped his family of a lovely wife and two brilliant teenage boys for a 26 year old English girl from his office! And the latest is that that girl is being dumped too.
    Way to go Mr. Thakran….you are a king!

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