CITY WHISPERS: Will Birkenstock shares get a kicking like Dr Martens?


CITY WHISPERS: Will Birkenstock shares get a kicking like Dr Martens?

Posh sandal maker Birkenstock is set to make its debut on the New York Stock Exchange as soon as next week in what many are predicting will be another blockbuster float to hit the US markets.

The purveyor of cork-soled footwear, described by some as the ‘world’s ugliest shoe,’ has become a global mega-brand and this year received a further gust of publicity when it was featured in summer smash hit Barbie.

Investors are salivating over the prospect of a listing, with the firm aiming to achieve a market value of up to £7.6 billion, which is bigger than British Airways’ owner IAG.

Best foot forward: Posh sandal maker Birkenstock is set to make its debut on the New York Stock Exchange

Best foot forward: Posh sandal maker Birkenstock is set to make its debut on the New York Stock Exchange

But Birkenstock would do well to heed the tale of another famous footwear brand that saw its fortunes turn sour on the public markets.

Bootmaker Dr Martens made its London debut in January 2021 with a value of £3.7 billion, but since then a string of profit warnings have caused its share price to crash by more than 60 per cent.

Birkenstock should be wary of being wrong-footed by fickle investors.

Standards slipping at Aldi?

Aldi is known for its metronome-like efficiency. 

One former employee even described the supermarket chain as ‘a logistics firm that just happens to do food retailing’. 

So standards must be slipping for its UK accounts to be overdue at Companies House. 

After all, we already know last year’s operating profit trebled to £180 million so there shouldn’t be anything to worry about, should there? 

Labour’s DJ declines DJ disco role 

Today marks the start of the Labour Party’s annual conference, in what is likely to be its last before the next General Election.

While the mass gathering will be dominated by packed meeting halls and gossip from the fringes, Labour’s student wing will also be holding a disco.

Unfortunately, the students’ first choice of DJ, ex-Treasury committee chair and now Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury Darren Jones, has politely declined, saying he is ‘the most unqualified person’ for the job among Labour MPs. 

This is despite his initials creating the apt moniker ‘DJ DJ’.

He did, however, offer to chat about ‘fiscal rules or economic growth’, in what was perhaps a covert move to kill off the disco entirely.

Rumours over next John Lewis boss 

David Potts, the soon-to-depart chief executive of Morrisons, was the name on everyone’s lips last week when Dame Sharon White announced her term as chair of John Lewis Partnership was coming to an end.

But might another supermarket retail veteran be in the running?

Justin King, who led Sainsbury’s for a decade and before that Marks & Spencer Food, seems to have the right CV.

King also seems in prime position as he already sits on the M&S board as a non-executive director.

So would he be up for the job?

‘No comment,’ he says.

                                                                                                                            Contributor: Patrick Tooher 



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