Samsonite buys online luggage retailer for US$105mn

Online luggage retailer eBag is acquired by Samsonite valued at US$105 million. The deal is part of Samsonite’s ongoing strategy to accelerate the growth of its direct-to-consumer, e-commerce business, and strengthen its existing digital capabilities.

The deal is part of Hong Kong-listed Samsonite’s strategy to expand its direct-to-consumer online sales. Most of the company’s sales are currently through brick-and-mortar stores.

"The acquisition provides us with a strong platform to significantly expand our direct-to-consumer online presence, not just in North America but around the world," said Samsonite CEO Ramesh Tainwala.

"With eBags’ immediate resources and digital expertise, we are able to expand our online retail capabilities in a meaningful way, driving stronger sales growth across all the brands in Samsonite’s portfolio. E-commerce is fast becoming a vital part of our business, and will continue to be central in our strategy moving forward."

US-based eBags will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Samsonite and continue doing business under the eBags name, the company said.

"This is an exciting day for eBags and we are thrilled to be joining the Samsonite family. Their considerable experience and well-established presence in the travel luggage industry, together with our digital capabilities and passion for travel, are a perfect match," said eBags CEO Mike Edwards.

eBags offers a diverse offering of travel bags and accessories including luggage, backpacks, handbags, business bags, travel accessories and apparel.

For the year ended December 25, 2016, eBags recorded net sales of US$158.5 million, an increase of 23.5% compared with the previous fiscal year.

On the other hand, Samsonite said earlier this week it had taken direct control of the wholesale and retail distribution of Tumi products in Hong Kong, Macau and China from 1 April.