Birkenstock, the iconic German footwear brand known for its sandals, is reportedly planning to go public in the United States as early as September 2023. The company’s decision to launch an Initial Public Offering (IPO) comes after a significant boost in sales and brand recognition, largely attributed to the recent “Barbie” movie where leading actress Margot Robbie donned a pair of pink Birkenstocks.
The IPO is being facilitated by L Catterton, a private equity firm backed by luxury French fashion house LVMH, which acquired a majority stake in Birkenstock in 2021. The transaction at the time valued the company at about 4 billion euros ($4.35 billion). Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. are also reportedly working with L Catterton on the potential listing.
The initial IPO is said to value Birkenstock at more than $8 billion, marking a significant increase from its valuation two years ago. This comes as no surprise given the company’s impressive performance in recent years. In 2021, Birkenstock saw its revenue rise by nearly 30% to approximately €1.2 billion ($1.3 billion), leading to adjusted earnings of €394 million.
Birkenstock‘s journey to becoming a high-fashion brand has been marked by collaborations with luxury names such as Dior, Manolo Blahnik, and Valentino. The company, founded over 250 years ago, entered the U.S. market in 1966 and has since become a staple in the wardrobes of fashionistas and celebrities alike.
The company has also been investing heavily in expanding its production sites in Germany. This includes a new €120 million ($131 million) factory in Pasewalk, a town north of Berlin, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2023. With around 5,500 employees, Birkenstock is not only one of the top five global footwear brands but also the largest employer in the German footwear industry.
While the exact date and size of the IPO have not yet been disclosed, the move is expected to be one of the most lucrative public offerings this year amid a struggling IPO market. As Birkenstock prepares to take this significant step, it continues to uphold its commitment to quality and sustainability, with every footbed made of natural cork, natural latex, jute, and suede from sustainable sources.