Samsonite gets packing for IPO

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The Independent Online

Samsonite, the luggage maker backed by the private equity firm CVC Capital Partners and Royal Bank of Scotland, is lining up an initial public offering in Hong Kong.

The IPO, which was approved by the exchangeyesterday, could raise up to $1.5bn (£921m).

Samsonite is set to join theluxury goods maker Prada,the handbag designer Coach,the commodities traderGlencore and other globalmultinationals looking toraise funds in Hong Kong,the world's top IPO marketfor two years running.

The luggage maker was founded in the US in 1910 as the Shwayder Trunk Manufacturing Company. One of its early suitcases was called the Samson, and the company changed its name to Samsonite in 1966.

In 2007 it was bought by CVC, but was hit by a slump in international travel and in consumer confidence during the financial crisis. RBS became part-owner of the brand in a debt for equity swap in 2009.