Belstaff acquired by chemicals company INEOS

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Multinational chemicals company INEOS has announced it has agreed a deal to buy British heritage brand Belstaff.

Belstaff is most well known for its motorcycle jackets, famously worn by Steve McQueen in The Great Escape. It’s thought the acquisition is part of a strategy to expand INEOS’s motoring operations, after it revealed plans to set up an independent car company last month.

The brand is currently owned by JAB Holdings, a German investment vehicle that recently sold its majority stake in Jimmy Choo. The company is moving away from luxury goods and focusing more on food, beverage, and beauty assets. It still has luxury Swiss shoe company Bally in its portfolio and is thought to be currently looking for buyers.

Terms of the deal have not been confirmed but Belstaff is currently making a loss and analysts recently estimated the business to be worth as little as £3m, after being bought for £100m in 2011.

Peter Harf, senior partner at JAB Luxury, said: “JAB is very pleased to be handing Belstaff’s reins to INEOS, a great, growing company with the passion, desire and vision to further the company’s success. Having invested in Belstaff and watched its brand grow over the last five years, we are confident that INEOS is the best possible steward for the company, and we trust the company’s next chapter will see both growth and well-deserved recognition for its iconic brand and talented team.”

Belstaff currently employs 200 people worldwide. The acquisition is expected to be complete in the fourth quarter of this year.

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