Björn Borg (STO:BORG) is acquiring the Finnish distribution operations, which currently consist of wholesaling of underwear, sportswear and bags as well as a Björn Borg store. The Björn Borg Group is already established in the country through its own footwear distribution. The operations have developed positively since the brand was launched in the country in the late ’90s, and Finland today is Björn Borg’s sixth largest market.
Ove Asplund, who has previous experience as sales manager for JC and a store manager for H&M, will be a minority owner with a 25 percent interest in the company and will be a driving force in its expansion. Anne Immonen will remain CEO of the operations in 2013.
“The Nordic region is our natural home market, and Finland plays an important role there in our continued expansion. The brand is especially strong in underwear, and we see good opportunities to develop other product areas as well, especially since the Finnish retail market is showing greater stability than many other European markets. Now that we have the opportunity to acquire these operations from our distributor in Finland together with an experienced local partner, we see it as a good opportunity for Björn Borg,” says Arthur Engel, CEO of Björn Borg.
Total purchase price is approximately SEK 9.1 million. Björn Borg estimates that the acquired Finnish operations will contribute positively to the Group’s operating profit in 2013. In 2012, the Finnish operations had a turnover of approximately SEK 31.6 million with an operating profit of about SEK 1.7 million.
About Björn Borg
The Group owns the Björn Borg trademark and its operations are focused on underwear. To that is offered sports wear and fragrances and through licensees also footwear, bags and eyewear. Björn Borg products are sold in around twenty markets, of which Sweden and Holland are the largest. The Björn Borg Group has operations at every level from branding to consumer sales in its own Björn Borg stores. Total sales of Björn Borg products in 2011 amounted to around SEK 1,7 billion, at the consumer level. Group net sales amounted to approximately SEK 536 million as per December 31, 2011, with 131 employees. The Björn Borg share is listed on the Nasdaq OMX Nordic in Stockholm since 2007.