L’Officiel Sold to Hong Kong-Based AMTD International

·2 min read

Hong Kong-based financial services company AMTD International has acquired French magazine publisher L’Officiel from the Jalou family for an undisclosed sum.

As part of the deal, Benjamin Eymère will continue to serve as chief executive officer of L’Officiel and has also been appointed as chief metaverse officer of AMTD, a new role where he will be responsible for driving AMTD’s innovation in the metaverse space.

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Christopher Brown, founder of Global Emerging Markets, an investment firm that has backed Jalou Media, and Marie-José Jalou, president of Financière Jalou, will continue to serve as co-chairs of the board of L’Officiel, together with Dr. Calvin Choi, founder of AMTD, as the new lead chairman of the board.

“Our goal is to showcase AMTD International’s leadership in metaversal entertainment and cultural areas, and metaversal investment banking,” Eymère said.

The enlarged AMTD International Group plans to establish L’Officiel’s presence in Hong Kong, Macau, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Switzerland and the Netherlands in the coming months. It also revealed the opening of the AMTD x L’Officiel land in The Sandbox, a virtual metaverse. Called “Fashion Skin,” the project will include a collection of metaverse-ready virtual clothing, developed by applying artificial intelligence to L’Officiel’s database of fashion imagery.

William Fung, CEO of AMTD International, added: “AMTD International pride ourselves on innovation and offering leading edge products and services to our clients. The successful acquisition of L’Officiel shows our ambition and commitment to continue diversifying our businesses and capabilities.”

The sale comes at a trying time for L’Officiel, which has been accused of failing to pay freelancers in multiple markets. In the U.S., where it has L’Officiel USA, the situation has culminated in it being sued by the City of New York. Earlier this week, L’Officiel claimed that it made a formal settlement offer to the City of New York in December and is “currently in discussions with the city to finalize a settlement.” A spokesperson for the City of New York did not immediately respond to request for comment.

In the suit, the city argued that the affected freelance workers, and the city as a whole, have suffered injury as a direct result of L’Officiel’s actions and that the city is entitled to injunctive relief, civil penalties and any other appropriate relief, while the injured freelance workers are entitled to recover double damages.

FOR MORE, SEE:

The City of New York Brings Legal Action Against L’Officiel USA for Failing to Pay Freelancers

Marie Claire Isn’t Completely Done With Print

What’s Going On With Celine and Vogue?

Ken Downing Joins Hearst Magazines as It Prepares to Launch Luxury E-commerce Marketplace

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