Looks Like Miuccia Needs Money for New Shoes
Mrs. Prada herself is putting her line out to dry. On the Hong Kong stock exchange no less. Prada announced last Thursday that their board had begun the process of listing the label on the international exchange. It seems that its not just us who have gone into debt over Prada’s must-haves, Miuccia is in the a bit of debt herself, just the wee sum of $1.4 billion. What’s up with that after the jump….
While Prada is still profitable, how could they not be with those prices and frankly gorgeous offerings, not even the Italian haute couture giant is immune to the pull of the global economic slump. Prada has not proven itself to be particularly fashion forward when it comes to Asian markets. They have been slow to make friends with newly developed millionaires of the developing world as have their peers like Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Armani. Prada has yet to drop their line in India and were latecomers to China, finally making a good showing this season.
That may explain why Prada Inc. is going to make its first offerings in Hong Kong and not scheduled to be offered on their home turf until the end of the year. The Pradas, worst of all, are low on cash, which means a lot less room to grow and experiment– something for which we have come to rely on Miuccia. The silver lining is that they are a classic and always will be, which shows in their sales. In their last reported earnings Prada was up 66% in net profits with rising sales by 17% to $2.5 billion in 2007. Their recent management shake-up has strengthened their books with key additions of worth-their-weight executives and the shedding of unprofitable holdings.
That could mean big money out of Hong Kong – the offering is predicted to raise as much as $1.5 billion – enough to start digging out of debt. But that would mean this family business that ran itself from a mom and pop shop in Milan’s famous Galleria, opened in 1913 by Miuccia’s grandfather Mario, for almost 70 years would no longer be just in the family. As of now 95% of the company is owned by Mrs. Prada and her hubs of 21 years, CEO Patrizio Bertelli. You too could own a bit of the legendary fashion house- try getting your accountant to put your 401k in Prada! We hear they are ready to give up as much as 40% of the company.
So lets hope our Miu Miu can raise the cash she needs when they open, cause momma definitely needs a new pair of shoes.