Hollywood superstar Hugh Jackman has emerged as a unlikely victor from WA billionaire Andrew Forrest's purchase of Australian bootmaker RM Williams.
The couple's Tattarang investment arm bought the firm bought the business for a reported $190 million from the world's largest consumer-focused private equity firm, L Catterton and minority shareholders including actor Hugh Jackman.
RM Williams was founded in 1932 by bushman and entrepreneur Reginald Murray "RM" Williams and is one of Australia's most iconic brands.
For 88-year-old R.M. Williams, which has 900 staff in Australia, that meant temporarily closing its Adelaide factory.
Jackman has been an investor in RM Williams since 2015, holding a five per cent stake in the company after.
According to The Sydney Morning Herald, the multi-billionaire and his wife are "incredibly proud and humbled" to now own the brand.
Mr and Mrs Forrest said they looked forward to meeting the nearly 900 RM Williams staff based in Australia, including 400 workers at its workshop in Salisbury, Adelaide.
Dr Forrest, the second-richest Australian and Fortescue Metals Group chairman, said he retained his first pair of R.M. Williams boots, given to him as a Christmas present as a teenager, and wore them on special family occasions.
"To wear RMs is to wear the boots of the countless hard-working Australians that have come before us", he said.
It is reported Mr Forrest bought the company in a deal worth $190m, from an American private equity company.
"RM Williams is a quintessential Aussie brand with a long and proud history of high-quality Australian craftsmanship", the statement said.
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