Christian Simoni

MILAN As it marks its 50th anniversary, Italian high-end children’s wear firm Monnalisa SpA is planning to publicly list on the Alternative Market of Capital segment of the Milan Stock Exchange by June this year. The procedures to list on AIM, which targets small and medium-size firms, are much faster and more streamlined than on the Bourse. Fiat heir Lapo Elkann’s Italia Independent is listed on this segment, for example.

Monnalisa, which is part of the Elite-Borsa Italiana group since April 2016, has selected KT&Partners as financial adviser; CFO Sim as nomad and global coordinator, as well as Ernst & Young, Simmons & Simmons and Epyon to prepare for the initial public offering. Communication will be managed by Spriano Communication & Partners. Borsa Italiana’s Elite program is designed to help firms open up to outside capital through stock market listings, or by preparing them for sales to private equity.

In 2017, Monnalisa, which produces and distributes high-end children’s wear for children up to age 16 under the Monnalisa, Jakioo and Hitch-hiker monikers, reported sales of 47.7 million euros, up 18 percent compared with 2016. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization climbed 56.6 percent to 6.6 million euros and exports accounted for 67 percent of sales.

“Monnalisa has always aimed to gradually grow, but in a constant way, in Italy and abroad,” said chief executive officer Christian Simoni. “The experience with the Elite program with Borsa Italiana has accelerated the improvement of some of our processes, of the system on internal control, of the governance, and has opened the company to new opportunities. We believe that the IPO can further emphasize the expansion plan and the positioning of the group at the international level, favoring also a further jump in size.”

The goal of the listing is to accelerate the growth and international presence of the group, in particular in the retail and e-commerce channels. The company distributes in more than 60 countries in Europe, the Americas, the Middle and Far East and Africa through 36 directly operated flagships, department stores including Harrods, Rinascente, Galeries Lafayette, Saks Fifth Avenue, Harvey Nichols, Bloomingdale’s and Sogo and in more than 800 multibrand stores. In 2016, Monnalisa set up controlled firms in Russia, China, Brazil, and the U.S. in addition to the Hong Kong, and branches in Spain and France.

The company was founded in Arezzo, in Italy’s Tuscany region, in 1968 by Piero Iacomoni and Barbara Bertocci. Iacomoni is the president of the company, which is privately held by his family and counts around 280 employees, while Bertocci is the creative director, heading a team of 30 people, flanked by fashion coordinator Diletta Iacomoni.