Valentino sold at a seriously stylish price

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Valentino, the brand famous for its opulent red ball gowns, has been sold for an estimated £600 million.

The iconic Italian fashion house was acquired by Qatari investment group Mayhoola for Investments S.P.C.

And Valentino’s chief executive Stefano Sassi said he was “delighted” about the sale.


“During the past few years, despite swings in the luxury markets, the company has operated with great intensity and remained focused on maximizing the potential of the Valentino brand,” he said.

“This effort should drive a 60 per cent increase in revenues from 2009 to 2012.”

Founded in 1960 by Valentino Garavani, the luxury fashion label achieved worldwide fame eight years later when its designer created the bridal gown for Jacqueline Onassis, the widow of assassinated US President John F. Kennedy.

The haute-couture brand became synonymous with opulence, glamour and the colour red, and its designs soon dominated the lavish wardrobes of the rich and famous.

So much so that for a long time the creative director was considered the undisputed king of couture.

And although 80-year-old Valentino retired in 2008, he still makes frequent appearances on the global celebrity circuit.

The fashion house's current creative directors are Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli.

The Qataris, who also own London’s luxury department store Harrods, have been among the world’s most active investors.

They have pumped cash into several prominent high-end Western brands including New York-based jeweler Tiffany & Co. and French luxury conglomerate LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton.

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