Tory Burch, a privately-held fashion powerhouse, is now valued at $3.5 billion, an astounding figure, as reported in Women’s Wear Daily. The rise in its valuation came after a round of share swaps which gave early investors the opportunity to grab new returns. The valuation of the company has risen $1.25 in just two years. Women’s Wear Daily reports that $200 million in stock was traded in the recent swap, and those who already owned sizeable stakes made their holdings even bigger, which is a vote of confidence for the company.
Despite Tory Burch’s burgeoning valuation, she and co-CEO Roger Farah, formerly of Ralph Lauren, are committed to keeping it private and are resisting an initial public offering. Tory Burch, rated by Forbes as the 79th most powerful woman in the world, managed to enrich her ex-husband Christopher, also a designer, when he sold shares in her company after their divorce and became a billionaire. However, Christopher Burch’s own company, C Wonder, has filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy.
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Tory Burch grew up in Valley Forge Pennsylvania, the daughter of Ira Earl “Bud” Robinson, a wealthy investor and Reva (nee Schapira) a Jewish actress who had dated Steve McQueen and Marlon Brando. After working in advertising for Vera Wang and Polo Ralph Lauren, Tory Burch started her own brand and when Oprah Winfrey called it “the next big thing in fashion” in 2005, her site received 8 million hits the following day. Tory Burch stores now number to 140 in locations worldwide.