France's Baccarat to be acquired by Chinese group Fortune Fountain Capital

This file photo taken on Oct 16, 2012 shows a shop of French crystal glass maker Baccarat in Nancy, eastern France.
This file photo taken on Oct 16, 2012 shows a shop of French crystal glass maker Baccarat in Nancy, eastern France.PHOTO: AFP

BEIJING (REUTERS) - French crystal maker Baccarat said on Friday that Chinese investment group Fortune Fountain Capital has signed a commitment to acquire an 88.8 per cent stake in the company from US investment firms Starwood Capital Group and L Catterton.

Under the terms of the agreement Fortune Fountain Capital would pay 222.70 euros per share, valuing the company at around 185 million euros.

Baccarat shares closed at 259.90 euros on Thursday. "If this transaction takes place, it would enable Baccarat to accelerate its strategic plans internationally, particularly in Asia and the Middle East, while supporting its growth in developed markets," Baccarat said in a statement.

On May 19 French daily L'Agefi reported that Starwood Capital, which holds a 66.6 per cent stake according to Thomson Reuters data, had put Baccarat up for sale, and was eyeing a valuation of 200 million euros.

Starwood has owned Baccarat since 2005 when it bought parent group Taittinger.