Farfetch reported to be planning $5bn float

Farfetch Natalie Massenet
Farfetch's Jose Neves and Dame Natalie Massenet

Online luxury platform Farfetch is reportedly planning a $5bn float on the New York Stock Exchange. According to Sky News the business is close to appointing bankers to handle the move.

No formal timetable is in place for the float but the report suggests it could take place within the next 18 months. Founder of the business José Neves told Sky News that while an IPO (initial public offering) was something it might consider in the future it wasn’t an immediate priority.

“An IPO is something we may consider in the future, but we are currently focusing on growing the business, with investors that fully support a business plan of investing to build THE technology platform for the global luxury industry,” he said in a statement.

Farfetch was founded by Neves in 2008 and is considered to be one of the UK’s most valuable technology start-ups. It began life as a platform uniting some of the world’s best luxury boutiques, a proposition which remains at the heart of its business (it now partners directly with around 750 designers and boutiques in 40 countries). However it has expanded into other areas, such as its Black & White division, which runs the e-commerce functions for luxury brands including Christopher Kane and Manolo Blahnik.

It also owns iconic London boutique Browns, which is being used as a test bed for its Store of the Future omnichannel business model, which it unveiled this spring at its first FarfetchOS retail and technology summit in London.

In February of this year Net-A-Porter founder Dame Natalie Massenet joined the business as non-executive co-chairman to work alongside Neves.