The private equity firm Initiative & Finance is selling its 55% stake in the brand, held since 2015, to LBO. Moustache Bikes founding managers Emmanuel Antonot and Grégory Sand, who previously held 45%, are reinvesting significantly. Antonot and Sand will continue to operate the company management.
Vincent Briançon, Mid Cap Partner at LBO France, said: “We are delighted to have the opportunity to work alongside the two founders and the team of Moustache Bikes to support the company in its new growth phase, both in France and internationally. While electric bikes currently account for 11% of the bikes sold in France, they are gaining ground as a new means of urban transportation and a new, dynamic leisure activity.”
Moustache Bikes currently generates a €50 million turnover with an annual growth of 30%, and in 2018 sold 27,000 bikes via its network of 530 bike dealers across 18 countries. The bikes are designed and assembled in France, with models costing between €2,200 and €8,000 each, with 40% of the brand’s bikes exported.
The brand’s success was rewarded in 2017 when it won ‘Start-up of the Year’ award for Eastern France as part of the EY & L’Express Entrepreneur of the Year awards.
Sand commented: “After three years of an excellent collaboration with Initiative & Finance, we are very pleased to welcome LBO France on board in order to take our business to the next level. The management of the strong growth which we have experienced from the outset requires the necessary resources and a solid support.
“The arrival of LBO France coincides perfectly with our strategy, needs and ambitions in France and internationally.”
Matthieu Douchet, Managing Partner at Initiative & Finance, added: “We draw particular satisfaction from having supported the founding managers of Moustache Bikes in this growth and structuring phase during which the company’s sales have quadrupled in less than four years.
“A pioneer in its sector, Moustache has succeeded in establishing itself in just a few years as a major player for urban, leisure and sports activities, in a growing, European-wide market, thanks to the very specific expertise applied to the development of its electric bikes and their strong identity.”
Clement Bonneau, of Moustache Bikes, spoke to CIN about what’s in the pipeline for the brand on the first episode of the CIN Podcast, you can listen here or via the player at the right of the website.