Ljubljana/Žiri – The Bank Assets Management Company (BAMC) announced it had sold its outright stake in footwear maker Alpina to K&H, a Czech company that is part of the Franco de Poisd’eau & CIE group, for an as yet undisclosed amount.
The buyer has been picked not just because it submitted the best financial offer but also because of a thorough development strategy, BAMC said on Tuesday.
The new owner has already presented its plans to the management and workers as it announced that it will focus on restructuring improvements in production and sales, and the development of the Alpina brand.
“Alpina is an established and sought-after brand, as evident from great demand by potential buyers. The new owner has recognised this potential and has bold development plans,” BAMC chairman Franci Matoz was quoted as saying.
Franco group owner František Pivoda added that Alpina was purchased because it was a strong and high-quality brand that has a strong position, especially in the sports segment.
“We’re convinced that the purchase has great potential for growth,” he said, adding that the brand would remain unchanged but its identity would be upgraded.
“We are confident that under the new leadership, numerous opportunities will open for the Alpina group, opportunities that a brand as renowned as Alpina deserves,” said Alpina supervisory board president Sebastian Cafuta.
Jure Krivina, the chair of Alpina’s works council, said the first impressions were good and the covenants provided by the representatives of K&H show they understand Alpina’s role as a traditional brand and local employer.
The purchase price has not been revealed but earlier media reports indicate K&H offered EUR 20 million, well above the EUR 17 million offered by Slovenian sports goods maker Elan.
Alpina generated EUR 44.7 million in revenue 2021 while posting a loss of EUR 0.9 million, considerably lower than the 4 million recorded in 2020.
The bad bank took a majority stake in Alpina in 2015, whereupon it converted nearly EUR 20 million in debt to equity and secured loans totalling EUR 24 million.
Alpina is best know for winter footwear and is a major global producer of shoes for cross-country running. It also owns the stylish Peko brand.