Warburg links with L Capital for China deal

The private equity pair has invested in shopping mall operator Sasseur

L Capital has teamed up with Warburg Pincus to buy a significant minority stake in Chinese shopping mall operator and developer Sasseur Cayman Holding Company, in which Warburg already has an existing investment, according to a joint statement.

Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.

Sasseur, which operates and develops lifestyle-focused outlet malls in China, has a strong emphasis on art- and business-related trade.

The deal is L Capital’s first in China’s outlet mall sector and also the first China-based investment from L Capital Asia II, which closed on $950 million in August 2013, Private Equity International reported earlier.

“We are strong believers in the outlet mall industry in China, given increasing brand and fashion awareness among middle class Chinese consumers. We are deeply impressed by the management team’s strong execution capability and proven track record to develop and operate some of the most successful outlet malls in China,” Ravi Thakran, chairman and managing partner of L Capital Asia, said in a statement.

“There are multiple levels for us to add value to this business and we are excited about the prospects of taking Sasseur to the next level through our operational value-add.”

David Li, managing director and head of Asia at Warburg, commented, “We are very pleased with Sassaur’s growth during the past three years since our initial investment in 2011, and we are excited to welcome L Capital Asia as its new shareholder.”

He added, “Discount retail malls are an emerging but fast-growing modern retail format in China with tremendous growth potential, and Sasseur, as one of the early movers in the space, has demonstrated strong capabilities in sourcing, designing, leasing and operation of outlet malls. We will continue to support Sasseur with our global operational and industry resources as the company enters a new phase of rapid development and expansion in China.”