DKSH Acquires Desco Asia Operations

DKSH Group, a leading international market expansion services provider, will acquire the Asian operations of the Desco von Schulthess Group, the parent firm of Swiss luxury watch brand Maurice Lacroix. The announcement was made Jan. 11 and released in the United States on Jan. 18. DKSH and Desco are two of Switzerland’s oldest global trading houses.

Under the agreement, DKSH will acquire 100 percent of Desco Rohstoffe Holding and Desco Asia Pacific Holding. Their operations should be integrated into DKSH by summer. Information about the purchase price wasn’t released.

The transaction strengthens the core businesses of both companies, according to a statement released by the companies.

For Desco, the sale will enable it to “concentrate primarily on developing its watchmaking business, Maurice Lacroix, as well as on distribution in Europe and the USA,” said the announcement. The sale lets DKSH acquire distribution rights in Asia for Desco’s Maurice Lacroix watch brand, as well as for other independent blue-chip watch brands like Breitling, Parmigiani and British Masters. DKSH is also taking a financial stake in Maurice Lacroix’s watchmaking operation in Switzerland.

For DKSH, the acquisition will enable it to build up its position as “a leading force in the market expansion services industry in Asia,” said the statement.

Desco founded in Zurich in 1889 is a private group of companies which operate as a wholesaler for select raw materials and a worldwide marketing company for high-quality luxury products.

DKSH, which has with operatiosn in 35 coutnries, helps other companies and brands to grow their business in new or existing markets, primarily in Asia. It traces its beginning to Swiss trading houses established in  Asia in the 1860s, though the companeis came togftehr as DKSH in 2002.