ITOCHU Invests in ASF Limited, an Intermediate Holding Company of Hong Kong's Fenix Group Holdings

December 13, 2013

ITOCHU Corporation (headquartered in Minato-ku, Tokyo; Masahiro Okafuji, President & CEO; hereinafter “ITOCHU”) and ITOCHU Textile Prominent (Asia) Ltd. (headquartered in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region; Motonari Shimizu, CEO; hereinafter “IPA”) have concluded an agreement with Fenix Group Holdings Limited (headquartered in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region; Masaaki Ogino, Chairman, and Anthony Keung, CEO: hereinafter “Fenix”) to invest in ASF Limited (hereinafter “ASF”), an intermediate holding company that falls under the auspices of Fenix. As a result, ITOCHU’s stake in ASF is 30%, which makes it an equity-method associated company.

Fenix is a holding company that handles a broad range of retail and other businesses, such as the operation of a luxury women’s fashion brand ANTEPRIMA and CITY SUPER, a food and sundries supermarket, in Asian regions, centered on Hong Kong and China. The ANTEPRIMA brand, in which designer Izumi Ogino participates as the only Japanese female designer in the Milano Collection, is extremely popular, especially in Asia and Europe, and operates approximately 100 stores around the world as a brand that originates from Italy.

ITOCHU and Fenix have built an amicable partnership over 30 years centered on transactions in OEM production. This time, the agreement came to fruition as there was a congruence of strategies between Fenix, which aims to expand the development of its brand retail business in Asia, and ITOCHU, which is pursuing a strategy that prioritizes the expansion of overseas earnings while accelerating the overseas expansion of the brand business.

ASF was established by taking over three businesses – the ANTEPRIMA brand business, a fashion retail business and a logistics business – from Fenix. It aims to reach sales of 20 billion yen in five years through this investment as a result of merging the strengths of both sides – such as the experience and expertise in the brand business that ITOCHU has cultivated over many years, IPA’s network spanning all Asian regions and Fenix’s retail expertise in various Asian countries – and by creating synergies, such as expanding ANTEPRIMA’s licensing business within Japan, developing and expanding existing brands in the Asian region, and developing new brands in Asia.

Overview of ASF Limited

Company name ASF Limited
Representative Anthony Keung
Location of headquarters Hong Kong
Establishment June 2013
Business description An intermediate holding company that falls under the auspices of Fenix. Companies that operate the ANTEPRIMA business, a fashion brand retail business as well as a logistics business fall under ASF Limited.