Fast fashion giant Shein considers London IPO


LONDON, England — Shein, the Chinese-founded online fast fashion giant, may announce plans to list on the London stock market this week at a valuation of 50 billion pounds ($64 billion), media reported on Monday.

The retail giant could reveal its initial public offering (IPO) in the British capital “as early as this week”, a person familiar with the matter told AFP.

Another source told AFP that the UK IPO filing would be confidential, giving the company greater flexibility and the ability to withhold information about its future strategy before going public.

However, the second source added that the launch of the London IPO could take several months to complete.

The big move comes after Shein, which attracts shoppers with its ultra-low prices and fast-production clothing, faced opposition to its New York listing amid tensions between the United States and China.

The Financial Times reported that Shein may submit plans to British regulators in the coming days.

Neither Shein nor the London Stock Exchange responded to requests for comment.

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Monday's report comes after UK Finance Minister Jeremy Hunt told Sky News in February that he discussed a London IPO with Shein executive chairman Donald Tang .

Hunt's ruling Conservatives currently trail the main opposition Labor Party ahead of the July 4 election.

Hargreaves Lansdown analyst Susannah Streeter said: “Confirming the listing could be new campaign fodder for the Conservatives, who may say it shows the government's efforts to attract companies to list in London are paying off.”

Read: The rise of fast fashion Shein and Temu has stirred up the global air cargo industry

The Times reported on Monday that Labor had also held talks with Down over the matter, as the opposition sought to shore up its business credibility.

In addition, the newspaper said French government ministers were also trying to persuade Schein to choose Paris over London.

Founded in China and headquartered in Singapore, Shein caters to young consumers through social media and quickly captures the global fast fashion market.

'Significant criticism'

Facing the wrath of environmental and human rights activists, the company has been accused of exploiting unpaid labor, obscuring production processes and encouraging overconsumption.

“Shein has been heavily criticized for producing large quantities of cheap clothing, a lack of transparency in its supply chain, and stealing the work of other designers. Given these concerns, investors may be wary.

Read: Online retailer Shein recently faces tough EU digital regulations

A recent study published by the American-Canadian campaign organization “Stand Earth” ranked Shein as the global fast fashion brand with the worst impact on the environment.

The European Union recently added Shein to a list of digital companies large enough to be subject to tighter security restrictions.

Shein, meanwhile, is not required to report annual earnings because it is not yet a publicly traded entity.

However, according to the Wall Street Journal, the company's revenue in 2022 will be US$23 billion and net profit will be US$800 million.


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The company joins Facebook, TikTok, X, YouTube and other companies on the list of “very large online platforms”, which have more than 45 million monthly active users in the EU.





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