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Tiffany Montgomery
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Quik a hot topic on Wall Street

By Tiffany Montgomery
December 10, 2010 6:21 AM

Trading in Quiksilver shares were a hot topic on Wall Street yesterday, with 8.7 million shares changing hands, according to the Associated Press.

 

That’s a 758.7% increase in Quiksilver’s 65-day average trading volume, AP said.

 

The stock closed up nearly 23% to $5.68.

 

The rampant trading came after French newspaper La Tribune reported French luxury company PPR, which owns Gucci and has a large stake in Puma, may be interested in Quiksilver. Analysts followed up with notes speculating about a possible acquisition.

 

Puma CEO Jochen Zeitz was recently promoted to be in charge of PPR’s “sports and lifestyle” division, but according to the Financial Times, it is currently the only brand in the division.

 

PPR Chairman and CEO Francois-Henri Pinault was quoted in the Financial Times dismissing other rumors that PPR may target Burberry.

 

“We have already made our structural acquisitions in luxury with Gucci and in lifestyle with Puma, so complementary acquisitions will be smaller. We want to buy businesses that we can develop and to which we can add value,” Pinault said. “I also won’t buy a brand that might be in competition with those I already own.”

 

The gaps that could be filled in luxury were watches and jewelry, accessories and some ready-to-wear, he said.

 

Reuters spoke to an analyst that said Quiksilver needs to revamp its domestic business.

 

"I think the company needs aggressive change," said Brian Sozzi, an analyst with Wall Street Strategies, noting Quiksilver's recent private placement. "It would be a good idea to remove itself from the public markets."

 

A Quiksilver spokesman declined to comment yesterday, saying the company does not comment on rumors.

 

In early trading Friday morning, Quiksilver's share price is down nearly 6%.

 

 


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