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Birkenstock owner eyes $8bn valuation in September IPO

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The private equity owners of German sandal maker Birkenstock are considering an initial public offering of the company that could take place as soon as September, according to people familiar with the matter.

If L Catterton decides to go ahead with the listing, Birkenstock could be valued at more than $8bn, the people added.

An exit at that valuation would mark a bumper return for the private equity firm backed by French luxury fashion house LVMH, which has invested in consumer brands including Scandinavian fashion company Ganni and fitness company ClassPass.

It would also see L Catterton complete the second listing of one of its portfolio companies in a matter of months at a time when many private equity firms are struggling to cash out.

Earlier this month, L Catterton-backed online beauty products retailer Oddity Tech raised more than $400mn when it listed on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange. One of the people said that Birkenstock’s IPO may take place later than September.

Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan are advising on the potential listing.

Birkenstock traces its roots back to 1774. It took private equity money for the first time when L Catterton bought a majority stake in the company in 2021 in a deal valuing Birkenstock at €4bn. Two members of the Birkenstock family retain a minority share.

At the time, the company said the money would be used to pursue growth in markets such as China and India, as well as expand its ecommerce business.

Birkenstock employs about 3,000 people and makes most of its footwear in its own factories in Germany. The company’s products, which include sandals and other footwear, are sold in some 90 countries across the world.

Bloomberg News earlier reported on Birkenstock’s IPO plans.

L Catterton was formed in 2016 when LVMH and Bernard Arnault’s family holding company merged with US private equity firm Catterton.

Since then, the firm has grown substantially and now manages approximately $30bn in assets.

L Catterton has also considering a public listing, the Financial Times reported last year, following in the footsteps of some of its peers, including London-based Bridgepoint, Stockholm-based EQT and New York-based Blue Owl.

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