L Catterton, the private equity firm backed by luxury French fashion house LVMH, has made a strategic investment in Japanese veterinary services company Withmal Inc.
(Bloomberg) — L Catterton, the private equity firm backed by luxury French fashion house LVMH, has made a strategic investment in Japanese veterinary services company Withmal Inc.
The announcement, which confirmed an earlier Bloomberg News report, didn’t include any financial details of the transaction. L Catterton was close to a deal to buy a majority stake in Withmal, taking the buyout firm’s investment in the pet care sector in Asia to about $200 million over the last 18 months, people familiar with the matter have said.
Founded in 2018, Withmal runs more than 20 pet clinics across Japan, the statement shows. Around half of its vet positions are held by women.
“Withmal is a scalable enterprise in a robust category in Japan that also addresses a very real challenge faced by business owners in the country – the lack of successors,” Taka Shimizu, a partner in the Asia fund of L Catterton, said in the statement. By joining Withmal, Japanese pet clinic founders who are planning to retire can extend the longevity of their practices, he added.
Building on more than two decades of experience investing in pet care companies in other regions, L Catterton made its first foray into the sector in Asia recently with bets on several pet food brands. The firm announced an investment in Shanghai Enova Pet Products in February 2022, followed by China’s Partner Pet and India’s Drools.
(Updates throughout with official confirmation.)
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