After teaming up with the Marcolin Group, LVMH has indirectly acquired a stake in Gentle Monster, the fast-growing Korean producer of original eyeglass frames and sunglasses, known for their “weird beauty.” It has become the largest shareholder after the company's founders, Jay Oh and Hankook Kim, through one of its investment vehicles, L Catterton Asia.
Reuters has reported a price of $57 million for the transaction, but the information could not be confirmed at the time of going to press. The company is likely to be introduced to the stock exchange at a later stage. The current business plan apparently calls for a compound annual growth rate of 25 percent, judging from its recent dynamics.
Gentle Monster is reported to have reached an annual turnover of around $200 million. Outside of South Korea, it has flagship stores in New York, Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu and Hong Kong. Another one is opening at the moment in the ION shopping mall of Singapore.
Founded only six years ago, it has become very popular in South Korea and China because of its highly creative and distinctive designs before its more recent international expansion on the wholesale and retail levels.