PPR MULLS IPO FOR ITS NET PORTAL
PARIS — Watch out for another potentially hot Internet stock.
Serge Weinberg, chairman of French retail conglomerate Pinault-Printemps-Redoute, said Friday that PPR was considering taking its Internet portal Mageos.com public in the near future.
“Mageos.com could enter into a partnership or even go public,” Weinberg said. But he emphasized that PPR wanted to “grow” Mageos before an IPO.
Weinberg’s comments came a day after Bernard Arnault, chairman of LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, announced LVMH was cranking up its Internet activity.
Francois Pinault, head of PPR parent Artemis, and Arnault have been fierce rivals since the two fought for control of Gucci Group last year — a battle Pinault won.
PPR announced the creation of Mageos, a free Internet service provider and portal, last October. It is a venue through which PPR hopes to become one of the leading French access providers and portal sites.
Mageos.com, in which PPR controls a 75 percent stake and French television group TF1 holds a 25 percent share, also provides links to PPR’s 40 other e-commerce sites, including FNAC.com, offering books and music, and Laredoute.fr, the Internet version of the catalog business.