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Ferrari races on to New York Stock Exchange

Published 21/10/2015

A trading post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange is ready for Ferrari's initial public offering. (AP)
A trading post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange is ready for Ferrari's initial public offering. (AP)

Ferrari has raced on to the New York Stock Exchange and its shares, trading under the ticker symbol RACE, have jumped sharply in its public debut.

The company, based in the northern Italian town of Maranello, has been privately held since its founding in 1929 by Italian sports driver Enzo Ferrari.

In 1969, Fiat-Chrysler bought a 50% stake in the company, which it then increased to 90% in 1988.

For Fiat Chrysler, the initial public offering (IPO) raises needed cash and also helps pare debt for the world's seventh largest car maker, which has ambitious plans to expand its Alfa Romeo brand and other higher-margin luxury cars like Maserati.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles will still retain an 80% share in Ferrari. It plans to distribute Ferrari stock to its shareholders next year.

The remaining 10% belongs to the Ferrari family.

The IPO, even in what has become a difficult market amid doubts about the economic recovery, raised more than 893 million US dollars this week.

A number of companies in recent weeks have cancelled IPO, fearing the market malaise.

But investors clamoured for a piece of one of the world's premier car manufacturers, erasing doubts about the allure of holding its stock.

Less than an hour after trading began, it had risen 9% to 56.88 dollars.

Fiat Chrysler is offering nearly a 10% stake in Ferrari and giving underwriters a 30-day option to buy up to an additional 1.7 million shares. If fully exercised, Ferrari will have raised 982.4 million dollars.

Ferrari reported a net profit of 265 million euro (£194 million) last year, up 7% from the previous year. Its net revenues have grown by 7% annually from 2005 to 2014. The company also has an extensive range of branded fashion items as well as a Ferrari World theme park in Abu Dhabi, with another set to open in Barcelona.

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