L Catterton Asia, the Asian unit of the largest and most global consumer-focused private equity firm in the world, today announced that it has partnered with Mitsui & Co., Principal Investments Ltd. (“MCPI”), a subsidiary of Mitsui & Co., Ltd. (“Mitsui”) to invest in OWNDAYS Inc., (the “Company”) an innovative Japanese eyewear company that delivers rapid service, high-quality prescription glasses in own-brand styles. The investment will be used to accelerate OWNDAYS’ growth across the Asia Pacific region.
OWNDAYS, which began its successful expansion across Southeast Asia in 2013, has become Japan’s most international optical eyewear retailer. With 115 stores in Japan and 142 stores in 10 other Asian markets, OWNDAYS has built a strong track record of successful expansion both in Japan and abroad. The current management team will continue to retain substantial equity interests and manage the Company.
OWNDAYS CEO Shuji Tanaka said, “We are excited to welcome two world-class partners, L Catterton Asia and Mitsui & Co., as we enter the next exciting phase in OWNDAYS’ growth in Japan and across Asia. Our ambition is to become Asia’s leading optical retailer and we plan to open more than 500 stores across the Asia Pacific region over the next five years.”
Commenting on the transaction, L Catterton Asia Chairman and Managing Partner Ravi Thakran stated, “Our investment in OWNDAYS marks our first foray into Japan and we are thrilled to begin this journey with two outstanding partners, OWNDAYS and Mitsui & Co. The OWNDAYS success story has been one of innovation, quality service and boldly exceeding consumer expectations. The Company is poised to take advantage of the robust macro trends that are driving the market for private brand eyewear. Together, L Catterton and Mitsui & Co. are committed to providing world class operational and strategic support to propel OWNDAYS to category leading growth and profitability. With Japanese quality, purity and efficiency increasingly appreciated and desired around the world, we see tremendous market opportunities for OWNDAYS.”
MCPI President and CEO Naoki Nakata commented, “We are pleased to partner with L Catterton Asia to invest in OWNDAYS, one of the region’s fastest-growing eyewear companies with an already strong presence across Asia. OWNDAYS is well placed for continued expansion, both domestically and abroad, while also improving profitability by fully leveraging Mitsui and L Catterton’s combined network, resources and demonstrable expertise in value creation.”
About L Catterton Asia
With over $15 billion of equity capital across six fund strategies in 17 offices globally, L Catterton is the largest and most global consumer-focused private equity firm in the world. L Catterton’s team of more than 160 investment and operating professionals partners with management teams around the world to implement strategic plans to foster growth, leveraging deep category insight, operational excellence, and a broad thought partnership network. Since 1989, the firm has made over 200 investments in leading consumer brands. L Catterton was formed through the partnership of Catterton, LVMH and Groupe Arnault. For more information about L Catterton, please visit lcatterton.com.
Launched in 2009, L Catterton Asia (previously known as L Capital Asia) is the Asian franchise of L Catterton, the world’s leading consumer growth investor. It has offices in Singapore and Mauritius, with further regional advisory presence in Hong Kong, Mumbai, Shanghai and Sydney. L Catterton Asia invests in select consumer lifestyle businesses that will benefit from growing discretionary consumption in Asian markets. L Catterton Asia leverages its strategic relationship with LVMH and Groupe Arnault across the entire investment process, from proprietary deal origination and industry-specific due diligence to post-investment operational value-add to its portfolio companies. L Catterton Asia’s investments include: Trendy International, Pepe Jeans, Gentle Monster, YG Entertainment, Impresario Entertainment & Hospitality and Sasseur — one of the largest operators and developers of lifestyle-focused outlet malls in China.
About Mitsui & Co., Principal Investments Ltd.
MCPI is an investment arm fully owned by Mitsui which is one of Japan’s largest diversified corporations. Founded in 2003 in Tokyo, MCPI is currently dedicated in private equity investments following Mitsui’s slogan “Challenges and Creation”. MCPI seeks to create corporate value by leveraging Mitsui’s networks, achieve operational improvement by providing full-time hands-on support, make flexible investment according to the specific needs and conditions of each company.
About OWNDAYS Inc.
OWNDAYS designs and manufactures optical eyewear glasses which are sold to customers in an “apparel-like” manner under the OWNDAYS retail brand. The retail sales channels are comprised of both direct and franchise operations. There are currently 257 stores in 11 countries including Japan, Singapore, Taiwan and others in south-east Asia. OWNDAYS seeks to become the fast fashion brand of optical eyewear originating from Japan, offering superior service to customers across Asia.