Moncler Heads to Europe’s Best IPO Debut This Year


Bloomberg-150x150  By Andrew Roberts  Dec 16, 2013
Moncler SpA (MONC) opened 41 percent higher than its initial public offering price in the first day of trading for the Italian luxury skiwear maker after investors sought about 27 times the amount of stock available.

The shares started trading at 14.40 euros in Milan, giving the company a market value of 3.6 billion euros ($5 billion) and putting Moncler on track for the biggest first-day gain among IPOs worth more than a billion dollars in Europe this year. They were offered to investors at 10.20 euros apiece.

Moncler SpA Chairman Remo Ruffini speaks to journalists after a news conference to announce the company's initial public offering inside the Borsa Italiana, Italy's Stock Exchange in Milan.

Photographer: Alessia Pierdomenico/Bloomberg. Moncler SpA Chairman Remo Ruffini speaks to journalists after a news conference to announce the company’s initial public offering inside the Borsa Italiana, Italy’s Stock Exchange in Milan.

The maker of $1,220 quilted polyester jackets follows both Salvatore Ferragamo SpA (SFER) and Brunello Cucinelli SpA (BC) in offering stock to the public as Asian demand for luxury goods fuels earnings growth and draws investors. Shares in Cucinelli, the maker of $3,195 cashmere cardigans, and Ferragamo, which sells $675 patent-leather platform heels, have more than tripled since they were listed in Milan in 2012 and 2011, respectively.

“Like we’ve seen in the last few IPOs in Italy in luxury, there tends to be a lot of demand for these brands because there aren’t that many around,” Allegra Perry, an analyst at Cantor Fitzgerald, said on Bloomberg Television’s “On The Move.”

Moncler SpA Chairman Remo Ruffini speaks to journalists after a news conference to… Read More

The shares traded at 14.40 euros as of 1:26 p.m. A close above 14.13 euros would eclipse October’s 38 percent first-day gain of state-run U.K. postal operator Royal Mail Plc. (RMG)

Moncler is seeking to capture a larger slice of the $101 billion designer clothing market by enlarging its store network and product range, according to Chairman Remo Ruffini, who has a net worth of $1.1 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Acquisition Plan

The company has about 100 of its own outlets and also distributes products in department stores as well as online. The skiwear maker may acquire a knitwear producer to accelerate development of the category, Ruffini said today in an interview on Bloomberg Television.

“We don’t want to put a label on any product,” said Ruffini, who isn’t selling any of his 32 percent stake in the offering. “We want to make something special.” Buying one of Italy’s manufacturers could speed up the process, he said.

The expansion is aimed at maintaining growth that’s outpacing rivals — even Cucinelli. Sales rose 35 percent to 489 million euros in 2012, while revenue at Cucinelli increased 15 percent to 279 million euros.

“Moncler will continue to grow more than 20 percent in the next two years,” said Ortelli. “In the medium term, management’s challenge is to shift into other product categories” without hurting profitability.
Photographer: Alessia Pierdomenico/Bloomberg

An employee adjusts a display inside a Moncler luxury skiwear store, operated by Moncler SpA, in Milan.

Riskier Investment

Photographer: Alessia Pierdomenico/Bloomberg An employee adjusts a display inside a Moncler luxury skiwear store, operated by Moncler SpA, in Milan.

Photographer: Alessia Pierdomenico/Bloomberg
An employee adjusts a display inside a Moncler luxury skiwear store, operated by Moncler SpA, in Milan.

Moncler’s reliance on winter apparel, which accounts for about three-quarters of sales, makes the company a riskier investment proposition than the likes of Cucinelli, according to Rahul Sharma, managing director of Neev Capital in London.

The share offering also comes as luxury makers from Louis Vuitton to Gucci report slowing sales growth. The luxury market globally will advance at the slowest pace since 2009 this year amid slack Chinese consumption and a weaker Japanese yen, according to a Bain & Co. forecast in October.

Moncler trades on a multiple of 17.5 times enterprise value to estimated 2014 earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Ferragamo trades at a comparable ratio of 15.5 times, while Cucinelli is more expensive, trading at 25.6 times.

“With an opening of this kind, Moncler’s multiple becomes truly high-end,” Mario Ortelli, an analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein in London, said by phone.

Biggest IPO

Moncler’s private-equity owners raised about 784 million euros after selling shares at the top of a targeted range. The institutional offer was more than 31 times oversubscribed, while retail investors sought about 14 times the amount of stock offered.

Investor appetite for European equities has helped companies raise about $35 billion in IPOs this year, more than double what they sold in 2012, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Moncler is the biggest IPO in Italy since Enel Green Power SpA listed in November 2010.

Most of the proceeds from Moncler’s IPO will go to Eurazeo SA, a French private-equity firm, and Carlyle Group. The owners exercised an over-allotment or “greenshoe” option to increase the offering size by 15 percent. About 31 percent of Moncler will be publicly traded after the IPO.

Moncler aborted plans to list in 2011 in favor of a sale to Eurazeo. The private-equity firm owns a 45 percent stake and is selling 14 percent in the IPO, the terms show. Carlyle Group is divesting half of its 18 percent holding.

Bank of America Corp., Goldman Sachs Group Inc., and Mediobanca SpA are managing the sale, along with banks including UBS AG, JPMorgan Chase & Co., and Nomura Holdings Inc. Lazard Ltd. and Claudio Costamagna are advising Moncler on the IPO.

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