Regular Flights to Milan Hint at Michael Kors’ Acquisition of Versace

On the morning of Tuesday, Sept. 25, after 24 hours of rumors, Michael Kors (KORS) officially announced it would buy Versace for $2.1 billion and change its name to Capri Holdings. Here’s video of CNBC announcing the deal:

Michael Kors, best known for its handbags, is headquartered in London with significant operations in New York City. Versace, the famed fashion house and luxury company, is headquartered in Milan.

Michael Kors beat out other potential buyers, including LVMH (owner of Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs, Dior, Bulgari and others), Kering (Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, Alexander McQueen), Tapestry (Coach, Kate Spade) and PVH (Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein). Traditionally, American companies like Michael Kors have struggled to acquire Europe’s high-end fashion brands, but Kors broke through in 2017 with its $1.2 billion purchase of Jimmy Choo, a European shoe brand.

With rumors of Michael Kors purchasing Versace swirling in recent days and weeks, analysts were certainly looking for signs that the closing of a deal was imminent.

Analysts and investors using JetTrack would have enjoyed a unique glimpse into where Michael Kors executives were traveling and how long they were staying at relevant destinations as speculation of a potential deal continued.

Michael Kors Flights to Milan

The JetTrack database includes one Michael Kors-owned aircraft — a Bombadier Aerospace Global 5000 that seats up to 15 passengers. An analyst using JetTrack could see a steady stream of flights by this Michael Kors-owned aircraft to Milan, beginning in June 2017 and continuing through the date of the acquisition announcement:

  • June 27, 2017: Newark to Milan (staying 20 hours)

  • Sept. 21, 2017: Marseille to Milan (2 days, 1 hour)

  • Dec. 6, 2017: London to Milan (17 hours)

  • March 20, 2018: London to Milan (18 hours)

  • May 23, 2018: London to Milan (20 hours)

  • July 9, 2018: Newark to Milan (1 day, 14 hours)

  • Sept. 24, 2018: Farmingdale (NY) to Milan

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Of course, news of the acquisition broke in the United States on the morning of Tuesday, Sept. 25, just hours after Michael Kors executives had arrived in Milan for a seventh visit in 15 months — and a fourth visit in just 6 months. As of Sept. 28, the aircraft remained in Milan.

Tracking Other Visitors to Milan

What other publicly traded companies were visiting Milan in the lead up to Michael Kors’ acquisition of Versace?

JetTrack allows users to search by ticker symbol, which is a fast and easy way to see how often executives from specific companies are visiting certain destinations. But JetTrack also allows users to search by sector.

For example, an analyst looking at visits to Milan could simply search for all “Retail Trade” companies that had visited Milan during any given time period. Below, see the results when searching for “Retail Trade” companies to visit Milan dating back to January 2017.

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Ralph Lauren visited Milan in both November 2017 and September 2018. There have been no rumors of Ralph Lauren acquiring Versace, though. And, other than those two Ralph Lauren visits, there’s no other visit from a company that would have been a logical acquirer for Versace.

How JetTrack Supports Confident Investment Decisions

JetTrack can be an effective tool for either identifying investment signals or confirming existing signals. Either way, analysts can use JetTrack to gain a competitive advantage and make confident investment decisions.

There are many case studies that describe how JetTrack can be used to predict coming mergers and acquisitions. Use JetTrack to monitor a specific company’s visits to destinations of interest, as well as to see how common or rare those visits might be. Or, if interested in an industry rather than a specific company, filter for flights by all companies in a specific sector to a certain destination.

Analysts and investors gather information from a wide range of sources. When JetTrack is added to a firm’s collection of research tools, it can be invaluable in uncovering and/or confirming investment signals across a range of industries and in different phases of a deal coming to pass.


Interested in taking a closer look at JetTrack? Get in touch to learn more.