by Stephen Garner

MovadoMovado Group has announced that it has acquired JLB Brands Ltd., the owner of the Olivia Burton brand, one of the United Kingdom’s fastest growing fashion watch and jewelry brands, for approximately £60.0 million GBP ($77 million USD) in cash, subject to working capital and other closing adjustments.

Movado Group expects the transaction to be immediately accretive exclusive of transaction related charges and the amortization of anticipated purchase accounting adjustments. The acquisition was funded with cash on hand of Movado Group’s non-U.S. subsidiaries and was completed on July 3. Movado Group plans to discuss this transaction in more detail when it reports its second quarter fiscal 2018 results.

Olivia Burton will continue to operate under the leadership of Lesa Bennett and Jemma Fennings, its founders, who will report to Efraim Grinberg, chairman and chief executive officer of Movado Group. Movado Group plans to retain Olivia Burton’s team in London.

“I have much admired the spectacular job that Lesa and Jemma have done in building the Olivia Burton brand in the UK over the last few years and more recently with the beginning of its international expansion,” said Grinberg. “While at accessible price points, they have kept the brand extremely creative, innovative and aspirational. They’ve also been building a very strong e-commerce business in the UK, which we believe has great potential for global expansion. With this acquisition, we not only reaffirm our commitment to the watch category, but also expand our presence into fashion jewelry. Olivia Burton’s success under Lesa and Jemma’s direction prove that beautifully designed watches and jewelry can continue to excite today’s consumer. I am pleased to collaborate with Lesa and Jemma on the continued global expansion of the Olivia Burton brand.”

“We’re thrilled to join Movado Group, which has the global scale and infrastructure required to support our vision for growth for the Olivia Burton brand,” added Fennings. “Movado Group shares our passion and relentless focus on innovation and this partnership will further strengthen the design of our watch and jewelry offerings and significantly increase our distribution around the world.”