Shoemaker Jimmy Choo to list shares in London

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LONDON (AP) — Luxury shoemaker Jimmy Choo has announced its intention to float its shares in London next month as part of an expansion drive, particularly in China.

The designer label said Tuesday it plans to list at least a quarter of its shares on the London Stock Exchange in October.

The brand, which recorded sales of 282 million pounds ($462 million) in 2013, said it is looking to grow in Asia and other new markets, and plans to open 10 to 15 stores per year.

Malaysian-born designer Jimmy Choo and the brand's co-founder Tamara Mellon opened their first store in London in 1996. It is now owned by private investment firm JAB Luxury, which acquired it in 2011.

The label has 120 stores worldwide selling designer shoes and handbags, and is led by creative director Sandra Choi, who is Choo's niece. Choo departed the company in 2001 and Mellon left in 2011.

JAB will sell part of their existing shares in Jimmy Choo in next month's initial public offering. The shoemaker said it will not be issuing any new shares to investors.

Peter Harf, non-executive chairman of Jimmy Choo, said in a statement the company is "confident that shareholders can expect strong growth and cash flow in the years to come."

Much of the focus of the expansion will be on China, where the brand wants to grow the number of stores from 10 to at least 30 "in the medium term." It is also looking at other emerging markets including the Middle East, South Korea, Singapore and Malaysia.

The company said it saw revenues of 150 million pounds in the first half of this year, up 9.4 percent compared to the same period last year.

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