Anta-led consortium moves closer to Amer takeover
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Anta-led consortium moves closer to Amer takeover

Fast-growing Chinese giant Anta Sports is closing in on acquisition target, Finnish sportswear Amer Sports. The acquisition – which will in fact be made by a consortium that is led by Anta – looks closer and closer to fruition. And if it comes off, it will be China’s biggest outbound deal into Europe this year.

Anta Sports’ share price has appreciated by 3% over the last 30 days

graph 11 anta

Source: Yahoo Finance

Anta is already China’s biggest sportswear brand by revenue, and if it’s successful in its attempt to lead the acquisition of Amer, it will find itself replete with a portfolio of hot new brands. Those include established names like Atomic, Salomon, Louisville Slugger, and Wilson. That’s a big boost at any time – but, given some of the areas those brands are best known for, it’s particularly beneficial prior to the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games.

Amer has resisted Anta’s overtures so far – according to an anonymous source, for years before the Chinese company made its feelings public in September. Two more anonymous sources claim that a deal is nearly done. But one of them cautioned that there was still room for it to fall apart, given Amer’s preference for independence.

Still, Amer’s chance to go it alone may be past it. Anta has assembled a formidable group, including Hong Kong-based equity group FountainVest. If Anta can pull it off, it won’t be the first time the company has found itself in charge of an established European brand within Chinese borders. It has previously made a great success of the Fila brand, to which it acquired the Chinese rights in 2009.

The Winter Olympics could be a big deal for Anta. As China’s biggest sportswear player, it’s in prime position to clean up financially. And Beijing is planning to use the games to double the current number of ski resorts in the country by 2030 – a tantalising prospect, if you find yourself in charge of a ski brand.

Walter Woo, an analyst and CMB International consultancy, said: “The choice of Amer Sports for Anta can complement some of its brands and is part of its globalisation strategy. To gain more growth in the Chinese market, Amer can leverage Anta’s sales channels and supply chain.”

Disclosure
Dominion holds Anta Sports in its Global Trends Luxury Fund.


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