Prada has dangled the IPO banana in front of investors before, but this morning in Italy the label finally announced it will go public — on the Hong Kong stock exchange. This would make Prada the first European luxury group and the only Italian company to list on the Hong Kong exchange. The size of the offering has not been announced, but Prada — 95 percent of which is owned by designer Miuccia Prada and her husband, Patrizio Bertelli — needs the money to pay off its $1.4 billion debt. Analysts say the timing is good, and that investors find the label very alluring (they're not the only ones). If it's not those banana prints and fur stoles that seduce them, the numbers should: Profits in the first nine months of last year rose to about $214 million, while revenue rose 31 percent from the previous year.
Prada Plans I.P.O. in Hong Kong [Deal Book/NYT]