Coco-Mat “Sleep on Nature” is the largest natural mattress company in the world with over 100 stores in 18 countries. The founding family wished to free capital and diversify their holdings and for this purpose it hired BBSL to advise it on the sale of a strategic stake in the company.
Actions undertaken as adviser to Coco-Mat’s owners:
• Prepared the company for the sale of a strategic stake:
– Split company into two separate companies: the operating company consisting of the factory/production and the commercial business of Coco-Mat (brand name, retail and wholesale sales etc.) and the other consisting of the significant portfolio of retail real estate assets which the company owned.
– Advised owners on the re-organization of the operating company from a family managed company into a “public” one organized into divisions with clearly defined responsibilities and reporting lines.
– Drafted a 5-year business plan of the operating company to present to potential investors.
• Executed the sale of 50% of the operating company to a blue-chip investor – the Libra Group (sum undisclosed)
– Researched the market and drafted a list of potential international investors
– Approached the investors on a confidential basis
– Lead negotiations with selected investor, drafted joint venture agreement and executed the investment.
It is notable that the sale of the stake was undertaken with the fact becoming public information only after the investment was completed, when it was announced officially by the relevant parties.
• Implemented follow-up actions for the company
– Led and executed the acquisition of 50% of the company’s nascent US subsidiary company which was owned by the company’s US partner
– Planned and executed the development of the company’s business in the US: opening 4 stores including a showroom at the Las Vegas Furniture Market; organized and supervised the business including the establishment of a perpetual inventory system
– Initiated and oversaw the SEO (search engine optimization) and SEM (search engine marketing) actions for the company
– Established Coco-Mat’s global collaboration with Natuzzi Italia, one of the world’s leading furniture companies: from meeting with Mr. Natuzzi and orchestrating discussions, to creating the concept as to how to win the mandate, overseeing and managing the bid process, negotiating and organizing the whole collaboration (including processes), signing agreement etc.
– Initiated and established Coco-Mat’s collaboration with Equinox Hotels in the US, which is a sister company of Equinox Fitness and is owned by L Catterton and the Related Companies Group: establishing relationship and commencing discussions with the CEO, reviewing and refining the hotel pricing structure of Coco-Mat which had not been reviewed for the last 8 years, negotiating, establishing basis of collaboration, signing agreement etc.
– Established the company’s retail store distribution network in Paris and in Cyprus.
– Marios Sophroniou for 5 years was the Vice Chairman of the company as also the President of the company’s fully owned US subsidiary.
– Established the owners’ other company which owned the retail real estate assets into a Real Estate Investment Trust company and had this company approved and registered as such by the Hellenic Capital Markets Commission.