An initial public offering of Yoox shares, which started on Nov. 16, was successfully completed on Monday. The stock, which has been the only flotation on the regulated market of the Milan stock exchange so far this year, is scheduled to start trading tomorrow.

The initial pricing of the shares has been set at of €3.60, high on the previously planned range of €3.60-4.50, capitalizing the company at €216 million before a possible capital increase.

The transaction included the sale of 18.09 million shares by existing shareholders, including venture capitalists. The company also sold 6.24 million newly issued shares. Another 3.65 million shares may be sold to institutional investors through an optional "greenshoe" overallotment, if there is enough demand for the stock.

With the IPO so far, 48.3 percent of Yoox' shares will be trading on the stock exchange. If the greenshoe is fully exercised, the free float will rise to 55.5 percent.

The transaction enables the Italian online retailer of fashion and designer products to raise funds to finance its development as well as let venture capitalists sell their stakes in the company. Reportedly, however, Renzo Rosso, who owns Diesel, has decided to keep his small minority stake in Yoox.

The Italian online fashion and designer goods retailer increased its sales by 48.8 percent to €106.7 million in the nine months to September. The turnover of Yoox’s two multi-brand sites, yoox.com and thecorner.com, was up by 43.9 percent to €88.8 million and that of the mono-brand sites it manages increased by 79.0 percent to €18.0 million.

By region, sales in Italy rose by 38.9 percent to €28.1 million, revenues in other European countries increased by 51.4 percent to €53.0 million, North America turnover was up by 42.5 percent to €16.8 million, Japanese sales rose by 96.2 percent to €6.4 million and revenues stemming from other regions jumped by 55.8 percent to €0.6 million. Turnover not linked to a specific geographic area were up by 79.8 percent to €1.7 million.

Ebitda surged to €7.2 million in the nine-month period from €2.7 million a year earlier, and the bottom line swung to a net profit of €2.8 million from a net loss of €0.4 million. Net debt dropped to €5.6 million at the end of September from €13.9 million at the end of 2008.

In the first nine months, the group registered 837,000 orders compared with 563,000 a year earlier, and the number of visitors rose to 5.9 million from 3.4 million. The average order value remained stable at €163.

The multi-brand site Yoox.com was created in June 2000 and is present in 57 countries. The bulk of the site’s products are apparel, shoes and accessories of established brands that are a year old and sold at a discount. The site also has some purposely designed and vintage collections, as well as books and artefacts.

In the first half of 2009, apparel represented 58 percent of the website’s revenues, bags and shoes 38 percent and other products 4 percent, according to the IPO prospectus.

Thecorner.com was launched in February 2008 and is available in Europe, the U.S. and Japan. It comprises products of the current season of established or niche brands that are a limited e-commerce business. The site’s prices are in line with those of traditional retail channels.

Yoox also manages 16 mono-brand e-commerce sites, including that of Bally. The other high-profile e-commerce platforms it operates include Emporio Armani, Valentino, Moschino, Dolce & Gabbana and Jil Sander. The latest site to go live was Roberto Cavalli, which started on Nov. 25.

The brands decide the products to sell on the mono-brand sites, as well as the prices and marketing strategy. They also remain the owners of the goods, even when located in Yoox’s three logistics centers, until sold to the final client.

The research group Forrester estimates that the e-commerce market, excluding travel expenses, totaled €71 billion in Western Europe and €96.2 billion in the U.S. last year.

In 2008, online sales of apparel reached €18.2 billion in the U.S. and €11.9 billion in Western Europe, according to the research group. In 2012, online apparel sales are forecast to reach €28.7 billion in the U.S. and €17.1 billion in Western Europe, it added.