How Much Is Donatella Versace Worth?
It started as a rumor but today the news was confirmed: Michael Kors will buy Italian luxury brand Versace for $2.12 billion. Kors, which also owns Jimmy Choo, plans to invest in an expansion of Versace retail outlets (from 200 to 3oo stores worldwide) and e-commerce with the aim of growing the company's revenue to $2 billion annually.
Donatella Versace, whose late brother Gianni founded the company in 1978, will stay on as Creative Director. "It has been more than 20 years since I took over the company along with my brother Santo and daughter Allegra," Donatella said in a statement. "I am proud that Versace remains very strong in both fashion and modern culture. Versace is not only synonymous with its iconic and unmistakable style, but with being inclusive and embracing of diversity, as well as empowering people to express themselves."
Donatella Versace, center, flanked by Jonathan Akeroyd, CEO of Versace, and John D. Idol, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Michael Kors Holdings Limited.
It's no surprise that Donatella stands to earn a great deal of money from this deal. In addition to what NPR calls "a mountain of cash," Donatella and her brother and daughter will each receive about $177 million worth of shares in a newly created company. (After the acquisition, Michael Kors Holdings Limited will change its name to Capri Holdings Limited.)
Donatella has been the public face of the brand since her brother's murder in 1997, serving as both the company's chief designer and vice president. Prior to taking the helm in 1997, she was known as her brother's "muse and critic."
The 63-year-old native of Calabria, Italy led the fashion brand to new heights with a valuation that was last reported at around $1.4 billion in 2014, when Blackstone Group purchased a 20-percent stake in the company, according to the New York Times. (Versace has been privately owned and thus does not release its financials.) Donatella owned a 20-percent share of the business prior to the Blackstone investment.
Gianni and Donatella Versace, circa 1996
She launched her own fragrance, Versace Woman, in February 2001, and under Donatella's watch, Versace became more than just a clothing brand, expanding into accessories, hotels, home decor, and more.
Her brother, Santo Versace, reportedly owned 30 percent of the company before the Blackstone sale, and her daughter, 31-year-old Allegra, had the remaining 50 percent of the company stock. (She also has a son, Daniel, with her former husband, Paul Beck, whom she married in 1983 and divorced in 2000.)
This story originally appeared on Townandcountrymag.com.
* Minor edits have been made by the Townandcountry.ph editors.