Swiss Watch International (SWI), US-based watch distributor and owner of retail sites including World of Watches, eWatches and The Watchery, has been acquired by Clearlake Capital Group.
The terms of the deal have not been disclosed, but Clearlake will now oversee SWI, which distributes watches and runs several watch retail sites from its headquarters in Florida.
SWI is a leading supplier to the largest US online retailers, marketplaces, private sales sites, daily deal sites, and other channels. It boasts a growing portfolio of proprietary watch brands, including Swiss Legend, Lucien Piccard, Red Line and a_Line timepieces, and is also the official distributor of brands such as Invicta, Elini, Glam Rock, and Kenneth Jay Lane in the US.
Behdad Eghbali, a founding partner at Clearlake, said of the deal: “Swiss Watch International is the clear market leader with an exceptional executive team that has an impressive track record of merchandising, distribution and online retailing capabilities.
“We are excited to sponsor SWI as a platform and deploy additional capital to consolidate the space. We plan to work closely with management to grow the business and contribute Clearlake’s operational capabilities to enhance value at SWI.”
Along with Eghbali and Arta Tabaee of Clearlake, Clearlake’s executive operating partners, Neel Grover and Greg Giraudi, have joined the SWI board of directors. Grover and Giraudi will serve as value-added operating partners to the company, assisting management in implementing key operational and marketing initiatives.
Gover said: “We are very pleased to partner with SWI, which is well-positioned to grow market share and capitalize on continued global eCommerce penetration and the expansion of the affordable luxury market.
“SWI is a strong platform, and we believe its growth and profitability can be enhanced by implementing key commercial, operational, and marketing initiatives.”