Online fashion giant Shein set for record-breaking listing on London stock market

ONLINE retail giant Shein could be fashioning a London stock market revival with the biggest listing on record.

The company, described as Asos and Boohoo on steroids, has been valued at £50billion in recent fundraisings and doubled profits to £1.5billion last year.

Online retailer Shein could be fashioning a London stock market revival

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Online retailer Shein could be fashioning a London stock market revivalCredit: Shein
Shein is dwarfing retail rivals like Tesco and Next

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Shein is dwarfing retail rivals like Tesco and Next

It is now gearing up to press the button on a mega flotation in London after fearing that tensions between the US and China would derail a New York Stock Exchange listing.

A float would be a big boost after a long drought of new listings and welcome change in the wave of companies ditching London for New York.

Shein — pronounced She-in — is planning to file a confidential prospectus to the financial regulator as soon as this week, according to Sky News.

The size of Shein would mean that it would dwarf previous largest London listing Glencore, which floated with a £36billion valuation in 2011.

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It would become one of the UK’s top 15 most valuable companies and also be worth almost as much as rivals Tesco, Next and Primark owner Associated British Foods combined.

Sources suggested the filing could slip to later this month.

Kathleen Brooks, research director at XTB, said: “While this filing does not indicate when its IPO would take place, it could be in the next few months.”

It is understood Shein’s senior team have told politicians they are relaxed about tax changes to its “small parcel loophole”.

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Rival retailers have accused Shein of abusing the tax system by sending goods from China to customers’ homes in small parcels and avoiding import duties.

Shein’s chairman Donald Tang has met with Chancellor Jeremy Hunt and Labour confirmed that they had also had several meetings with Shein.

Influencer Lele Pons modelling some of the fashion giant's summer clothes

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Influencer Lele Pons modelling some of the fashion giant’s summer clothes
Shein's listing in London could be record-breaking

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Shein’s listing in London could be record-breaking
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BOTH the main political parties have made it clear they want to revive the London stock market.

But how much are they, and investors, willing to hold their nose in order to snare Shein?

The Chinese fast fashion giant has made its billions by mining social media data to spot the trends and pumping out cheap clothes to Western shoppers.

It churns out more than 6,000 new products on its site every day, made in over 5,000 third-party contracted factories.

Some City funds have already raised concerns about how it can really ensure fair treatment of workers.

Shein has faced allegations about cotton sourced from Uyghur forced labour camps.

Critics also argue Shein has been built on systemic theft of intellectual property, with small designers accusing the site of ripping off their ideas, while bigger brands Dr Martens, Ralph Lauren and Levis have all sued for copyright infringement.

It also ships small parcels to customers, rather than paying import duties.

This hurts British retailers who cannot compete because they pay higher taxes.

Politicians will argue that listing in London will mean Shein will be under more pressure to be transparent.

But there are still fears Shein’s arrival could be a fashionable flash in the pan, while its lasting legacy is a lot shoddier.

Monzo’s first year in profit

DIGITAL bank Monzo has reported its first annual profit since launching nine years ago and now has its sights on Europe and the US.

The bank, known for its bright coral-coloured debit cards, added 2.3million more customers last year to become the UK’s seventh-biggest bank.

Monzo has reported its first annual profit since its launch

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Monzo has reported its first annual profit since its launchCredit: Alamy

Boss TS Anil said the bank had a “landmark year of record growth” and now has nearly 10million customers.

By comparison, rival challenger bank Starling has 3.6 million customers while market leader Lloyds has 30million.

Monzo posted a pre-tax profit of £15.4million for the year to the end of March, compared with a loss of £116.3million last year.

The bank said the profits had given it confidence to open an office in Dublin, which it described as a “gateway” to help it expand across Europe.

It is already plotting a launch in the US after raising nearly £500million in April.

Fridays’ bar axe

THE owner of TGI Fridays has scrapped its cocktail bar business — amid slumping sales.

Hostmore yesterday said that it would shut its last remaining 63rd+1st, named after the New York streets of the first TGI Fridays.

The business said that stripping out the extra costs should boost earnings.

It came as TGI Fridays’ sales have sunk by 10 per cent so far this year.

£7BN drug drop

AROUND £7billion was wiped off drug giant GSK yesterday after a court ruled it must face trials on whether a former medicine causes cancer.

A US court in Delaware has said more than 70,000 legal claims against its Zantac heartburn drug could go ahead.

The medicine, also known as Ranitidine, has been pulled from the market.

GSK shares dropped by as much as 10 per cent yesterday, erasing almost half the gains made this year.

Experts say Zantac lawsuits could cost the firm £31billion.

House about that

AROUND one in five new first-time buyers took out a mortgage beyond 35 years, according to UK Finance.

More have stretched their terms to make monthly payments more affordable.

Most first-time buyers end up moving or remortgaging.

M&S pay boost

THE boss of Marks & Spencer has seen his pay packet double in size after the retailer’s turnaround.

Stuart Machin will receive £4.7million including bonuses and share awards, compared with £2.7million the previous year, after M&S reported the best financial performance since 1997.

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Meanwhile, his outgoing co-chief exec Katie Bickerstaffe will also receive £4.4million in total pay.

At Sainsbury’s, chief exec Simon Roberts saw his pay slip from £5.2million to £4.9million after lower profits.