Newspaper article International New York Times

Ferrari Shares Surge in Trade Debut

Newspaper article International New York Times

Ferrari Shares Surge in Trade Debut

Article excerpt

The sports car manufacturer has started trading on the New York Stock Exchange, though it will remain tightly controlled by a small collection of investors.

For years, car fanatics have dreamed of owning a Ferrari. Now they can own at least a piece of the company.

The sports car manufacturer started trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday after pricing its initial public offering on Tuesday at $52 a share, the top end of an expected price range, raising more than $894 million for its corporate parent, Fiat Chrysler. The stock sale values the racecar specialist at about $9.8 billion.

Trading under the ticker symbol RACE, shares of Ferrari opened at $60, more than 15 percent higher than the offer price, and were trading at $57.02, up 9.65 percent in late morning.

The offering comes at a tough time for European automakers. Weeks earlier, shares of its parent and those of other European automakers sagged for a time in the wake of the diesel emissions cheating scandal at Volkswagen.

It will also triumphantly enter a stock market that has proved trying for many other market debutants.

First Data, the huge credit card processor, faltered in its initial offering last week as it priced below an expected price range. The stock price of Pure Storage, a highly recommended data storage provider, slumped in its first day of trading, though its shares eventually recovered. And Albertsons, the big supermarket chain, has postponed its I.P.O.

Ferrari, of course, is not a payments company or a Silicon Valley start-up or a grocery chain. It is one of the most venerated names in high-end sports cars, having drawn the affection of car aficionados for decades. (The company's road shows for potential investors drew capacity crowds in cities like New York and London, according to reports.)

Founded by the racecar driver Enzo Ferrari -- known as "il Grande Vecchio," or "the Great Old Man," late in life -- the company did not start out as a car manufacturer. Instead it was Scuderia Ferrari, a racing team that initially used Alfa Romeo cars.

By 1947, Mr. Ferrari had begun producing his own sports cars, starting with the 125 S model, largely to help finance the racing team. …

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