Richemont terminates agreement with Farfetch after announcing takeover of platform

Following Monday’s announcement of an agreement between Farfetch and South Korea’s Coupang, the Richemont group, owner of Cartier, announced in a press release that it was abandoning plans to sell Yoox Net-A-Porter (YNAP) to the world leader in luxury e-commerce.


The Swiss group’s announcement comes after South Korean e-commerce giant Coupang said earlier on Monday that it was considering buying online retailer Farfetch, giving the platform $500 million ($457 million) to continue its business.


An agreement to this effect was reached with a group of investors who held over 80% of Farfetch’s outstanding term loans, by Coupang, accompanied by investment company Greenoaks. Farfetch was advised by JPMorgan.


Coupang, listed on the New York Stock Exchange, is one of the world’s leading e.commerce companies. It has developed food delivery, video streaming and payment services in Asia (South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, China and India).


Farfetch will rededicate itself to providing the highest experience for the world’s most exclusive brands,” Coupang founder and CEO Bom Kim said in a statement. He also said that its expertise in logistics, combined with Farfetch’s experience in selling high-end brands, would enable it to expand in South Korea, a buoyant market for luxury goods.


Sale of Yoox Net-à-Porter abandoned


For its part, Richemont had agreed last year to sell Farfetch a 47.5% stake in Yoox Net-A-Porter, with the option for the listed platform to purchase 100% of the shares at a later date.


The agreement also called for Dubai Mall developer Mohamed Alabbar to take a 3.2% stake in Farfetch through his Symphony Global investment vehicle.


Due to the contemplated transaction announced by Farfetch on December 18, 2023, the agreements announced in August 2022 cannot be completed” Richemont said on Monday.


Consequently, Richemont, Farfetch and Symphony Global, one of Mr. Mohamed Alabbar’s investment vehicles, have terminated the agreements” .


Richemont explains that it will reassess the options for YNAP “in order to best exploit its strengths and potential under new management“.


The Swiss group is now considering other options for powering the e-commerce of its Houses, noting that they continue to operate today with their own technology. Richemont owns some twenty luxury brands, mainly in watch and jewelry (Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels…) but also in fashion (Chloé, Azzedine Alaia…) and writing instruments (Montblanc).


A $300 million loan abandoned


Richemont has lost some feathers in the Farfetch operation: it expects not to be repaid a $300 million loan granted to the platform at the end of 2020.


Long considered an outstanding e.commerce success story, Farfetch, founded in 2008 by Portuguese entrepreneur José Neves, has lost its lustre. The post-covid downturn in e-commerce and the recent slowdown in the luxury goods market in China and the USA have accelerated its decline.


The platform is not alone in its difficulties. According to Miss Tweed media, the takeover of Matchesfashion, the British premium fashion e-retailer, by British retailer Frasers is about to be announced. The Frasers group has reportedly offered only around £80 million to its current owner, the private equity firm Apax Partners. Apax Partners had lined up £780 million to acquire Matchesfashion in 2017…


Read also > Richemont: Potential Farfetch delisting discourages investment – Luxus Plus (

Richemont gets EU green light for sale of Yoox-Net-A-Porter to Farfetch – Luxus Plus (

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Thanks to its extensive knowledge of these sectors, the Luxus + editorial team deciphers for its readers the main economic and technological stakes in fashion, watchmaking, jewelry, gastronomy, perfumes and cosmetics, hotels, and prestigious real estate.

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