Kering bought Puma in 2007

Kering bought Puma in 2007

French luxury goods group Kering is to spin off German sports brand Puma to its shareholders as part of plans to transform itself into a pure luxury player.

In a move that will allow the owner of high-fashion labels including Gucci and Alexander McQueen to remove itself from the sports lifestyle business, Kering will distribute around 70% of Puma shares – out of the 86.3% already owned by the group – to its shareholders.

Kering will retain the 16% of shares outstanding, while Artémis, which holds 40.9% of Kering's shares, will become a long-term strategic shareholder in Puma with an ownership of around 29%. The number of the brand's publicly traded shares will be increased to around 55%.

The deal puts to bed long-standing speculation that Kering would divest Puma, which it bought in 2007 for around US$7bn. The brand has consistently underperformed, with a turnaround only happening in the last two years.

In October, Puma raised its full-year guidance on the back of a strong third-quarter increase in sales and earnings.

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Kering, however, says the deal to spin-off the brand will allow it to reinforce its status as a leading luxury pure player with an enhanced profitability. The group's ambition is to continue to grow and develop its couture, leather goods, jewellery and watch businesses.

"The contemplated distribution of Puma shares to our shareholders would be a significant milestone in the history of the group," says CEO François-Henri Pinault. "Kering would dedicate itself entirely to the development of its luxury houses, whose enduring appeal, built on creative audacity and innovativeness, will allow us to continue to gain market share and create value. 

"This operation would enable our shareholders to directly benefit from Puma's future value creation. We are proud to have supported the turnaround of Puma, which now has unrivalled capabilities to take full advantage of the specific dynamics of its global markets and is poised to achieve substantial growth, led by its talented and passionate management team. We have laid strong foundations for a bright future for Puma."