Luxury online fashion retailer Farfetch (FTCH) made its debut on the New York Stock Exchange today (Sept. 21) and saw shares jump over 50% in the first hours of trading. The London-based tech unicorn hit a high of $30.60, well above its initial offering of $20 (paywall), which topped its expected range of $17 to $19 per share. Trading closed at $28.45, giving the company a market cap of over $8 billion (paywall).
While Farfetch has yet to reach profitability, the promising debut shows investors are interested in its success at the intersection of e-commerce and luxury. Founded in 2008 by Portuguese entrepreneur José Neves, the firm’s platform connects shoppers to over 700 high-end labels across the globe and ships to nearly 200 countries. Its marketplace currently has 2.3 million customers, and its relationships with elite brands make it a power player in the luxury goods space, estimated to be worth over $300 billion worldwide in 2017.
While investors can always have a change of heart, Farfetch’s niche appeal may prove robust in the long run, especially with luxury labels continuing to resist selling on Amazon for fear that brand images could be compromised.