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Levi Strauss files for IPO, seeks listing on NYSE under ‘LEVI'

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Jeans maker Levi Strauss & Co has filed to go public as it looks to continue its global expansion, seeking listing on the NYSE under ticker "LEVI."

[NEW YORK] Jeans maker Levi Strauss & Co has filed to go public as it looks to continue its global expansion, seeking listing on the NYSE under ticker "LEVI."

The paperwork was filed with an initial offering size of US$100 million, a placeholder amount that's used to calculate fees and will typically change. CNBC reported that the denim maker is looking to raise US$600 million to US$800 million.

The company, founded in the 1800s, has been expanding overseas. Now 45 per cent of its sales come from outside the Americas. Its revenue hit US$5.6 billion in its year ended Nov 2018, putting it about on par with Harley-Davidson Inc in terms of size.

The initial public offering comes at a precarious time for the denim industry, with the category losing market share to jogging pants and other apparel.

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The company said in the filing that it sees a "significant opportunity" to boost its presence in emerging markets such as China, India and Brazil. China represents roughly 20 per cent of the global apparel market, but only represented 3 per cent of Levi's revenues, it said.

Other apparel makers, including American Eagle Outfitters Inc. and Abercrombie & Fitch Co., fell on the news.

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