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Reliance Brands to acquire 40% stake in Italian toy maker Plastic Legno SPA's India business

RBL, a subsidiary of Reliance Retail Ventures, marked its first international foray by acquiring British toy retailer Hamleys.

June 01, 2022 / 05:01 PM IST
Representative Image (Reuters)

Representative Image (Reuters)

Reliance Brands Limited (RBL), a subsidiary of Reliance Retail Ventures, announced on June 1 that it has entered into a joint venture with Italian toy manufacturer Plastic Legno SPA to acquire a 40 percent stake in the latter’s toy-making business in India.

Through the deal, Reliance Brands aims to “strengthen the toy manufacturing ecosystem in India”, the company said in a stock exchange filing.

The statement read: “RBL and Plastic Legno SPA have signed a joint venture arrangement through which RBL will acquire a 40 percent stake in Plastic Legno SPA’s toy manufacturing business in India.”

“This investment by RBL serves a dual purpose, bringing in vertical integration for RBL’s toy business and helping diversify the supply chain with a long-term strategic interest in building toy manufacturing in India,” the statement added.

RBL had marked its first international foray by acquiring British toy retailer Hamleys.

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Plastic Legno SPA is owned by the Sunino group, a privately held group of companies founded in Italy, which has over 25 years of experience in toy production in Europe. The group had started its India business in 2009 “out of a need to develop a strong production hub that would cater to global markets”, and also because India was a fast-evolving and growing market.

Commenting on the joint venture, an RBL spokesperson said: “Keeping with our honourable prime minister’s vision of Atmanirbhar India, this collaboration with Plastic Legno’s deep experience in world-class toy manufacturing coupled with our strong footing in the global toy retail industry would open new doors and unparalleled opportunities for toys manufactured in India. It is imperative for RBL to build design-to-shelf capability for a strategic advantage over the competition and to be an accelerator in building a robust toy manufacturing ecosystem in India not only for domestic consumption but also for global markets.”

The spokesperson further noted: “RBL has a strong play in the toy industry with its portfolio of Hamleys, the British toy retailer, and homegrown toy brand Rowan, making RBL one of the leading toy distributors. Hamleys currently has a global footprint across 15 countries with 213 doors and is India's largest chain of toy stores."

Paolo Sunino, Co-owner, Sunino Group, said: “We are very privileged to have RBL as a partner in this joint venture. We are confident that Plastic Legno’s experience in toy production and Hamley’s commercial outreach, will complement one another to enable the JV company to achieve greater heights and success. We have important development plans to implement, always in the spirit of creating a cultural background in this specific sector in India. We are ready for the challenges of the future, but when there is a group like RBL alongside, we are sure that together we can do a great development.”

Disclaimer:  Moneycontrol is a part of the Network18 group. Network18 is controlled by Independent Media Trust, of which Reliance Industries is the sole beneficiary.
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first published: Jun 1, 2022 04:53 pm
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