Press & News
Bruno Sälzer acquires 15% of fashion brand Bench and becomes CEO and Chairman
Dr Bruno Sälzer (57) will become Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Chairman of international fashion brand Bench by 1 December 2014 at the latest. The manager will also acquire a 15% share of EMERAM Urbanics Holding Ltd., which owns Bench. Funds advised by EMERAM Capital Partners acquired Bench from private equity company HgCapital in February 2014.
Bench, founded in Great Britain in 1987, is represented in 26 countries in Europe and North America and offers fashionable yet functional lifestyle clothing for men and women in the core 20 to 30 year-old target group. The company, with around 400 employees, achieved annual turnover of more than 100 million euro last year. This is complemented by turnover from licenced partners totalling approx. 50 million euro. Its largest markets are Great Britain, Germany and (under licence) Canada. Bench is profitable and, with an equity ratio of more than 50%, has a very solid financial basis.
Bruno Sälzer: "Bench fashion is an expression of young people's attitude towards life in the age of the Internet and social media: individual, casual and with an eye for their own style. This exciting brand appeals to a target group which is of increasing importance for the fashion industry. What is important for me is that I am able to have a long-term entrepreneurial stake in Bench."
Dr. Christian Näther, Gründungspartner bei EMERAM, ommented: "With Bruno Sälzer, we are bringing our ideal CEO candidate on board at Bench. The fact that he also takes a significant share in Bench shows that we have not only gained a first class manager, but a valuable partner with an entrepreneurial mind."
EMERAM Capital Partners is a leading equity investment company for SMEs in German-speaking countries. As a business development partner, we foster the long-term growth of our portfolio companies with capital and expertise.
The funds advised by EMERAM invest in the consumer, technology/software and service sectors. Their total volume currently stands at EUR 400 million. In general, the funds acquire a significant stake in the company and give the respective management team an opportunity to invest, too.