It was rumoured back in April that Qatari investment fund Mayhoola, which also owns Valentino, was looking to buy French fashion house Balmain, and it has been revealed today that the purchase has indeed taken place.
The deal means that Mayhoola will own 100% of the brand's capital, though the exact sale amount has not yet been disclosed. It's estimated the sale was somewhere around 500 million euros (approximately Dhs2 billion).
The merger was helmed by Paris-based firm Bucephale Finance, who said of the transaction, "[Mayhoola], an investment vehicle backed by Qatar's emir, will allow the brand to accelerate its development, notably with the opening of new stores abroad."
The Financial Times reports that a person close to the deal believes that "Mayhoola's plan is to combine Balmain and Valentino under one umbrella and eventually list the group."
Olivier Rousteing has often visited Dubai (perhaps most notably bringing Selena, Kendall and Gigi with him for NYE 2014 and then hosting a VIP dinner at Nobu last year with the region's elite) and if the Balmain x H&M collaboration sell-out was anything to go by, there's an insatiable appetite for the brand in the region. All in all, this sounds like a match made in sartorial heaven. - Elle Timms