Fabindia, the authentic Indian clothes and accessories retail chain store, is in talks to acquire UK’s bohemian womenswear retailer East. The negotiations have been going on for a while now and may have broken down over a disagreement over valuations, reports Sunday Telegraph. The valuations may be on the lower side as the sales in UK are falling.
East may now raise more money from its existing investors but the talks with Fabindia could be revived, the report added quoting sources. The investors in East include Luke Johnson, the Channel 4 chairman and John Singh of Jaipur
East was formed in 1994 and started with mainly clothes and designs based on designs from Jaipur. Now the company has grown to having 92 branches which sell men’s and women’s clothing, household furnishings, pottery food and handicrafts.
Fabindia got a valuation of $184 million last year when WCP Mauritius Holdings, run by James Wolfensohn, the former president of the World Bank, paid $11 million for a 6% stake in the company. Formed in 1960 by John Bissell, a former buyer for Macy’s in New York, to supply ethnic Indian clothes to the western world, Fabindia has come a long way. The retail chain is in a rapid expansion drive and plans to expand the number of stores to 250 by 2010 from the present 80-85 stores. It has also recently introduced a line of craft-based jewellery to expand its customer base.