Peddling Luxury


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What's going on?

In its second-quarter update on Tuesday, American jeweler Tiffany’s & Co reported sales that missed forecasts – but a profit that exceeded expectations. That bodes well for other high-end companies about to break a stock market sweat…

What does this mean?

Tiffany’s global sales shrank versus the same time last year, partly because of a strong US dollar that crimped the value of foreign revenues (sound familiar?). And with fewer flush tourists from you know where, Tiffany’s lost out Stateside too. But it wasn’t all bad: domestic spenders, the company said, still had an eye for the finer things – chiming with recent data.

News of big spenders in the US might come as motivation music to Peloton’s ears. The luxury home exercise equipment-maker, whose workout bikes cost over $2,000, filed for an initial public offering (IPO) on Tuesday.

Why should I care?

For you personally: The pace has been set.

Before a company publicly lists its shares, it pulls back the curtain on its finances. Behind Peloton’s were sales of almost $1 billion in the past year – and a loss of almost $200 million. That loss won’t outpace Uber and WeWork’s $2 billion, but it’s still significant. It’ll be up to public market investors, then, to decide if Peloton is worth at least double what private investors last thought. And while buoyant US consumer confidence data could suggest future growth, those investors ought to remember that, after five years, most IPOs are below their initial price.

The bigger picture: Traditional tech coming to market.

Peloton makes nearly $200 million annually from selling workout content subscriptions, so it’s arguably a tech company. That could attract European investors who are already (despite country-wide economic brouhaha) assessing German firm TeamViewer ahead of its IPO this year. The workplace productivity firm recently began selling subscriptions to its software, which should make its earnings more stable – and help justify a $6 billion valuation that’d make it the country’s second-largest tech company.

Originally posted as part of the Finimize daily email.

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