MyTheresa Is E-Commerce for Luxury. The Stock Might Be the Cheapest Thing It Sells.
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MyTheresa Is E-Commerce for Luxury. The Stock Might Be the Cheapest Thing It Sells.

Mytheresa, based in Munich, went public in the U.S. in late January, raising about US$350 million for the company.

By Nicholas Jasinski
Mon, Mar 8, 2021 12:52amGrey Clock 4 min

Bricks-and-mortar fashion boutiques have been in a tough spot during the pandemic. Small stores, after all, aren’t set up for social distance. Online retailer Mytheresa has been able to fill the void. The website caters to wealthy shoppers looking for help in finding their next designer handbag, pair of shoes, clothing item, or accessory.

Mytheresa, based in Munich, went public in the U.S. in late January, raising about US$350 million for the company. The listing grew out of the bankruptcy of Neiman Marcus, which purchased Mytheresa in 2014. The small-cap has a market value of about $2.2 billion.

Mytheresa stock (ticker: MYTE)—technically an American depositary share of parent company MYT Netherlands Parent—was recently trading just below its $26 initial-public-offering price after having jumped to $36 shortly after the debut. The stock could recover those losses and more in the coming months.

“They are at the intersection of two higher-than-average growth trends in retail: luxury and e-commerce,” says J.P. Morgan analyst Matthew Boss.

Luxury buyers have been slower to adopt e-commerce. Before the Covid-19 pandemic, some 12% of global luxury sales happened online, compared with a 20% share of overall retail. The gap is closing. A recent study by consultancy Bain estimates that the share of luxury goods sold online could nearly triple to more than 30% by 2025.

Meanwhile, the overall luxury market is growing by about 7% annually.

The tailwinds put Mytheresa in an enviable position, and the company should get a further boost from its expansion in the U.S. and China, which are currently just 10% of sales each. (Europe was 60% in its latest fiscal year.) The company now has collections for men and kids, and it could expand into categories like jewellery and furniture in the future.

Mytheresa isn’t your typical money-losing tech start-up. The company, which reports in euros, earned €6.4 million ($9.9 million) in its latest fiscal year on €449 million in revenue.

Sales have grown an average of 22% over the past two fiscal years, while adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization, or Ebitda, have grown at a 30% clip. For the fiscal year that ends in June, analysts are forecasting revenue growth of 25%, to €560 million. Analysts, who track adjusted earnings, expect the company to make €30.4 million this year, up about 60% from the adjusted figure last year.

“We are dealing with high-net-worth individuals who like to spend money—that’s a great customer base, and our core asset is this customer,” says Mytheresa CEO Michael Kliger.

The customer focus has helped the company earn a consistent profit, with a gross profit margin of about 45% and an adjusted Ebitda margin of about 8%. Other e-commerce players at Mytheresa’s early stage of growth have been years away from turning a profit.

If Amazon.com is the “Everything Store,” Mytheresa has taken the opposite approach. The site carries about 200 brands, fewer than luxury e-commerce rivals Farfetch (FTCH) or Richemont’s (CFRUY) Net-a-Porter. A recent search for “black dress” on Mytheresa’s U.S. site yielded just over 2,000 results, versus more than 7,000 at Farfetch.

Mytheresa’s most loyal shoppers get access to personal shoppers, styling and concierge services, and other perks like invitations to exclusive designer events and parties.

CEO Kliger says there’s a fine balance between presenting products in a way that’s helpful to shoppers and overwhelming them with an endless assortment. His company is focused on curation and more-abstract shopping desires, he tells Barron’s.

Customers looking for a specific Burberry coat, Chloé handbag, or pair of Gucci sneakers are better served buying directly from the designer.

Mytheresa’s website and app, now set up for spring and summer, are currently promoting multibrand compilations including “sandal season” and “talking-point pieces.”

The unique edit, to use the fashion-industry parlance, stands out to customers. Some 90% of Mytheresa customers surveyed by Cowen analyst Oliver Chen said they were likely to recommend the site to a friend, and 75% of them browse it weekly. Nearly 50% of Mytheresa’s customers spend at least $30,000 on luxury goods annually, the survey found.

Investors have been far more stingy when it comes to Mytheresa stock. The shares trade for 2.8 times this year’s estimated sales, versus 8.2 times for Farfetch and 4.5 times for The RealReal (REAL)—both of which are losing money.

Mytheresa could rally as investors reconsider that valuation gap. J.P. Morgan’s Boss has a price target of $38 on the stock, 50% above its recent close.

For now, Mytheresa stock is a luxury play at a bargain price. The sale is unlikely to last.



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Savvy travellers who plan their trips around dining at their destination’s most in-demand restaurants know that securing a reservation at a top Paris eatery isn’t an easy proposition on any given day.

Come the Olympics in July, when the city is flooded with tourists, one would expect the jockey sport to snag a table to be that much more intense. But that’s not necessarily shaping up to be the case. As of mid-May, Parisian insiders such as hotel managers, restaurant owners, and local luxury concierges reported that inquiries at sought-after spots were no higher than usual, foretelling a potential opportunity for visitors looking for a fine-dining experience during the games.

The time to book falls over the next few weeks given that many top spots don’t take reservations until one month before the dining date.

The Michelin-starred Jean Imbert Au Plaza Athenee and Le Relais Plaza, both at Hotel Plaza Athenee and helmed by the renowned French chef Jean Imbert, are two examples.

Francois Delahaye, the COO of the Dorchester Collection, a hospitality company that includes the Plaza Athenee and a second Paris property, Le Meurice, says that his regular guests who are visiting for the games and Parisians who frequent the restaurants know not to call too far in advance of when they want to dine.

Further, he doesn’t foresee reservations being a challenge at either venue or at Le Meurice’s two-Michelin-starred Restaurant Le Meurice Alain Ducasse.

“Booking for the restaurants won’t be an issue because people are planning meals at the last minute,” Delahaye says. “Also, the people who are in Paris specifically for the Olympics are here for the games, not to eat at restaurants. They’re not the big-spending clientele that we usually get.”

Delahaye doesn’t expect the kinds of peak crowds that descend on fine dining during Fashion Week each spring and autumn, for example, when trying to land a seat at the three eateries is nearly impossible. “People are fighting to get in,” he says. “You need to book through your hotel’s concierge, have an inside source, or be a hotel or restaurant regular.”

Several Paris luxury concierge companies echoed Delahaye’s perspective

Manuel de Croutte, the founder of Exclusive & Private, says that Paris regulars probably aren’t planning a trip when the Olympics transpire—from July 26 to Aug. 11—because they want to avoid the tourist rush. “We’ve gotten some reservation requests from people who’ve heard about us but not nearly as many as we usually get when the very wealthy travellers are here,” he says.

During peak periods like the French Open or Fashion Week, de Croutte says that his job entails making bookings for travellers who don’t have any other way to get into buzzy or Michelin-starred establishments.

“You’re unlikely to get a table at a see-and-be-seen place without knowing someone,” de Croutte says. “No one picks up the phone or answers email.” He says his team has established relationships with managers and owners of many of the hot spots in Paris and often visits them in person to land tables.

Exclusive & Private’s Black Book of Paris restaurant recommendations for Olympic visitors span a broad range, from casual bistros to fine-dining.

Michelin eateries include the three-star Le Gabriel at La Reserve, the two-star Le Clarence near the Champs-Elysee, and the two-star Le Taillevent.

Spots without a Michelin star but equally notable are also on de Croutte’s list: L’ Ami Jean offers traditional and flavourful southwestern French cuisine, Allard is a brasserie from Alain Ducasse, and Laurent serves French food to a fashionable set.

“My favourite neighbourhood for restaurants is Saint Germain de Pres,” de Croutte says. “You’ll find unassuming but chic names with excellent food and a great vibe. You can book with these places directly if you’re here for the Olympics, but don’t wait until the last minute because they will get filled.”

He also cautions that some Paris eateries are asking for nonrefundable prepayments for reservations during the Olympics.

“Be sure you want to go before committing and ask about the refund policy if you are charged,” he says.

Stephanie Boutet-Fajol, the founder of Sacrebleu Paris, says her bespoke travel company charges a lump sum of about US$750 to make all the restaurant bookings for the Olympic period, though the price varies depending on the dates and the number of restaurants that a client requests. “Reservations around the closing ceremony are harder to come by because that’s when more elite travelers are coming to Paris and want the chic restaurants that are always difficult to get a table at,” she says.

Meanwhile, chefs at some Michelin-starred restaurants share that they have tables available during the Olympics and welcome travellers to their establishments.

Thibaut Spiwack, for one, behind the Michelin-starred Anona, serving modern French cuisine, and the culinary consultant for the popular Netflix series Emily in Paris , says that he is open for reservations.

“My team and I look forward to sharing a culinary experience with new clientele that I hope will remain in their memory,” he says.

Spiwack suggests that travellers check out other worthwhile restaurants where he himself dines. For terrific wine, there’s Lava, and for Italian, he likes Epoca where the pastas are “divine.” Janine is the best bistro in town, and Prima wins for a pizza fix, he says.

“You have a lot of restaurants in Paris to pick from,” Spiwack says. “You just need to determine where you want to go, and book as soon as you can.”