Birkenstock unveils IPO plans in the latest sign of a rebound in listings

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Birkenstock has filed for an initial public offering in New York, the latest sign that the US market for listings is rebounding after more than 18 months of stagnation, Birkenstock has revealed.

The German sandal maker was targeting a valuation of more than $8 billion in an initial public offering, according to people familiar with the matter. The company filed a confidential prospectus with regulators in July, but Tuesday’s public filing will allow the company to join the New York Stock Exchange starting in early October.

Its owner, L Catterton, is aiming to list the week of October 9, according to people familiar with the matter.

A bid for Birkenstock would come on the heels of several high-profile deals, including U.K.-based chip designer Arm and grocery app Instacart.

This will also be the second IPO for one of L Catterton’s portfolio companies in a matter of months, following online beauty retailer Oddity Tech’s listing on the Nasdaq in July.

The strong reception for Oddity and several other companies that listed at the start of the summer helped build confidence among dealmakers and IPO candidates after one of the longest fundraising freezes in decades.

This confidence has been further strengthened by the imminent listing of ARM, which is set to raise up to $4.9 billion for its owner, SoftBank. Arm’s offering — the largest since November 2021 — was oversubscribed several times and order books closed early Tuesday amid strong demand.

Birkenstock reported revenue of $644 million in the six months ended March 31, up 19 percent from the same period in the previous fiscal year. However, net profit fell by 45 percent to $40 million due to a sharp rise in operating expenses.

The company is trying to sell a larger share of its shoes directly to consumers rather than through retailers, which it said has led to higher costs. Earnings were also hit by rising wages and a weak US dollar.

Birkenstock’s roots go back to 1774, but CEO Oliver Reichert insisted in a company prospectus that it “remains powered by a youthful energy level, with all the freshness and creative diversity of an inspiring Silicon Valley startup.”

It first took private equity money when L Catterton, backed by French luxury fashion house LVMH, bought a majority stake in the company in 2021 in a deal that valued Birkenstock at €4 billion. Two Birkenstock family members retain a minority stake.

L. Catterton declined to comment.

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