Yet another luxury brand looks East

Barely a couple of weeks pass without yet another company that is classed as a luxury brand being linked to a listing in Asia. This time, and following in the footsteps this year of Prada, Ducati and Manchester United, it’s the turn of Links of London to be linked with an IPO over in Hong Kong.

Once again it’s the lure of the nouveau riche and the emerging middle class in China that is driving Links to look East. If you combine the potential market with the demand for luxury European brands then it really is no surprise that every luxury brand that is considering raising funds or being exited by its owners is automatically linked to Hong Kong or Singapore for a listing.

This isn’t the first time that Links has been the subject of speculation that it would be undertaking an IPO. Back in January 2010 the company was the subject of speculation that it would list on the London Stock Exchange, which obviously didn’t proceed.

Links is currently a subsidiary of Folli Follie, the Greek based former listed company, which itself was the subject of a public takeover at the end of 2010 by Hellenic Duty Free Shops. So any potential listing of Links could see a spin out of part or all of the business from Hellenic.

Links is well-known for its ‘sweetie bracelets’ to which charms can be added. Should it pursue the Hong Kong listing then it would be bringing itself directly in to competition with Pandora, the Danish jewellery company that listed in October 2010 – all be it Copenhagen – with an initial high demand for its shares, but has subsequently seen its sales and share price drop.

Filed under: brands, BRIC, IPOs, luxury, Singapore, Asia