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Prada for sale?

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Luxury Italian label Prada could be sold to a private individual or consortium. Clothing tycoon Richard Caring has been in talks to buy the family-owned Italian fashion house Prada, in a deal rumoured to be worth 2 billion euros, according to British media reports.

It has been reported that Caring, who made his fortune supplying many of Britain’s leading clothing stores such as Topshop, has been involved in meetings with the 55-year-old Miuccia Prada and her husband, Prada’s chief executive Patrizio Bertelli. According to The Times and The Telegraph, Caring faces stiff competition from at least two private equity groups –reported to be Permira and Carlyle.

Meanwhile, the Financial Times said the fashion house is preparing for an initial public offering (IPO) instead of a private sale.

According to BBC, “Prada spokesman stepped up speculation that the luxury goods brand – known for its sleek but simple couture – could be sold by saying the company was worth 3bn euros ($4bn; £2bn), 1bn euros more than was reported in the weekend press.”

However, Prada was not immediately available for comment. It was not immediately possible to reach Caring.

Demand for luxury goods, particularly in Asia, is booming and private equity firms are keen to cash in on the growth market, according to analysts.

– Bangalore Bureau

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