(Bloomberg) -- Luxury sneaker brand Golden Goose Group SpA is kicking off a Milan initial public offering that is poised to be Italy’s largest listing in over a year, buoying an uneven recovery in Europe’s equity capital markets.

Golden Goose aims to raise €100 million ($108 million) from selling new shares and its owner, the private equity firm Permira, plans to sell an unspecified amount of existing stock, the company said in a statement Thursday. 

While the size of the offering has yet to be determined, at least 25% of the company will be listed, and Bloomberg News reported earlier that Golden Goose could be valued at about €3 billion including net debt. That indicates the IPO will be Italy’s largest since at least the €599 million sale by gambling company Lottomatica SpA in May last year. 

Golden Goose joins buyout giant CVC Capital Partners Plc and Spanish beauty group Puig Brands SA in moving ahead with listing plans in Europe this year, boosted by the stock market’s rally to record highs. IPO volumes sank in 2022 and 2023 as central banks raised interest rates to cool inflation, denting investors’ appetite for risk.

The market has rebounded, with companies raising almost $13 billion via IPOs this year, more than double the amount in the same period last year. In the US, proceeds from stock market listings this year total $17.2 billion.

Still, the recovery has been mixed, with some companies deciding against listing because they’re unable to get the valuations they want. Just this week Bloomberg reported that Greyhound bus owner Flix postponed a planned listing in Frankfurt while battery maker Northvolt AB pushed back its Stockholm IPO to next year.

The Golden Goose IPO may benefit from a bit of star power. The company’s shoes, which feature weather-beaten designs, have been spotted on celebrities including singers Selena Gomez and Taylor Swift. A pair of Ball Star Wishes sneakers for men is priced at $740 on the company’s website.

Golden Goose is testing the market at a time when the luxury business is slowing. Kering SA said last month that sales at its Gucci brand fell 18% in the first quarter on slack demand in China. Larger rival LVMH reported 2% organic sales growth in fashion and leather goods for the first quarter, down from 18% growth a year earlier.

Read more: Golden Goose Bets In-Store Cobblers Will Appeal to Sneakerheads

Golden Goose plans to use the IPO proceeds to pay down debt. The company is targeting net sales of about €1 billion by 2029, up from €587 million last year. 

The company will also invest in new markets to tap into a younger customer base, Chief Executive Officer Silvio Campara said in a phone interview. 

About 90% of its business comes from US, Europe, China and Japan, where the average age of consumers ranges from 36 to 51, he said. The new markets that the company is eyeing have a much younger demographic, he said. He pointed to South America, Africa, the Middle East and India, where the average ranges from 19 to 24.

Another strategy to boost sales will be personalizing sneakers for customers, the CEO said.

Personalization is “really the new frontier,” Campara said. The company is “shifting from hand-made into soul-made, where there is also the inclusion of the final consumer in the creativity process.”

Permira bought the shoemaker for €1.3 billion in 2020. At Golden Goose IPO’s pitch meetings late last year, bankers showed up wearing the namesake sneakers with sharp suits as they tried to impress prospective clients and competed for roles on the deal, Bloomberg News reported in November.

Bank of America Corp., JPMorgan Chase & Co., Mediobanca SpA and UBS Group AG are arranging the offering.

--With assistance from Antonio Vanuzzo.

(Updates with CEO comments from 10th paragraph.)

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