Roberto Cavalli Decides Not to Sell, and You Can Probably Guess Why

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Remember how Roberto Cavalli put his company up for sale — and yet it seemed like he wasn't ready to completely let go because he also said he would be a part of the glitzy zebra-striped package, staying on as captain of the Cavalli ship when the new owners took over? Yeah, well, he's decided not to sell after all. He cites the crappy economy as the reason; these days he just won't be able to get the bajillion clams he wants for his empire. WWD reports Cavalli told Italian financial daily Il Sole 24 he wouldn't revisit a possible sale before 2009:

“The timing is not ripe yet for such a step. What’s more, as I have already said a thousand times, we don’t need [to sell].”

…“A year ago, [the banks] spoke to me about certain numbers, which today have vanished with the stock market crisis,” Cavalli told Il Sole. “I’m not selling for 800-900 million [euros].”

Merrill Lynch had valued the company at 1.4 billion euros (about $2.19 billion). Quite a few private-equity funds were set to make pretty serious bids on the company next week — alas, it seems the captain is not yet ready to abandon his helm. We suggest all formerly interested bidders take a long lunch and go shopping in their new spare time.

Roberto Cavalli Backs Off Selling Company [WWD]