Swedish Outdoor Brand Haglöfs Sold to Lionrock Capital in New Adventure

Photo by Ezra Jeffrey-Comeau

Haglöfs AB, a leading Swedish outdoor apparel and gear company, has been acquired by Hong Kong-based private equity firm LionRock Capital, the companies announced Tuesday. The deal ends Haglöfs’ 12-year run as a subsidiary of athletic shoe and apparel maker ASICS Corp.

LionRock purchased 100 percent of Haglöfs for an undisclosed amount. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2023.

Founded in 1914 by avid outdoorsman Wiktor Haglöf, the company has grown from a one-man backpack operation to a globally recognized brand. Haglöfs is best known for its high-performance apparel, footwear and hardware designed for skiing, climbing, hiking and other outdoor activities.

“Haglöfs fits seamlessly into our portfolio and evidences our commitment to acquire well-understood heritage brands with best-in-class products,” said Daniel Tseung, LionRock’s founding partner, in a statement. “We are excited to embark on a new journey with the company to expedite its growth both in the European market and beyond.”

Headquartered in Bromma, a borough of Stockholm, Haglöfs employs over 200 people and sells its products in 28 countries worldwide. The brand places a strong emphasis on sustainability and environmental stewardship.

“We have long admired Haglöfs as a brand which shares our commitment to sustainability and is embodied by its passion for the environment and the natural world and to tackling the climate issues we face,” said Tom Pitts, LionRock’s head of Europe. “An unwavering consideration of the next generation drives Haglöfs to produce quality products which are made to last and shapes its entire business approach.”

ASICS acquired Haglöfs in 2010 as part of a push into the European outdoor market. The Japanese company will now focus more narrowly on athletic performance categories.

“ASICS has been a supportive and actively involved partner, providing invaluable assistance throughout our journey together,” said Haglöfs CEO Fredrik Ohlsson. “We are thrilled to start a new chapter with LionRock as our shareholder and are looking forward to becoming part of the LionRock family.”

LionRock, established in 2011, invests in middle-market companies across the consumer, technology and healthcare sectors in North America, Europe and Asia. Its current portfolio includes fashion brand American Apparel, Italian coffee maker illycaffè, and U.K. restaurant chain Wagamama.

With the addition of Haglöfs, LionRock believes it can accelerate expansion of the Swedish brand, especially in the key markets of China, the United States and Western Europe.

“The outdoor industry is thriving globally, and we think Haglöfs is well positioned for growth with its strong product offering and brand identity,” said Tseung.

The executive said LionRock will provide “strategic guidance and operational expertise” while allowing Haglöfs management to focus on product development, marketing and other core business areas.

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