Boutique cycling clothier Rapha has a new majority shareholder with ties to Walmart.
As first reported by Sky News, RZC Investments has acquired a majority stake in Rapha in a deal worth £200 million pounds / $260 million dollars. The U.S.-based investment firm is lead by Tom and Stuart Walton, two of the billionaire grandsons of Sam Walton, the founder of Walmart.
Does this mean we can expect to see Rapha’s high-end kits for sale at the world’s largest retailer?
If the Walton’s history of investment in cycling is any indication of their plans, the answer is a resounding no.
RZC and Walmart are distinct entities with very different business interests.
In addition to the acquisition of Rapha, RZC also invests in Allied Cycle Works, the Little Rock, Arkansas-based bicycle company dedicated to bringing carbon manufacturing to the United States.
Tom Walton, along with the Walton Family Foundation, has been instrumental in developing sustainable mountain bike trail networks throughout Northwest Arkansas.