Pirelli set to go public
The management at Pirelli, the multinational tyre manufacturer based in Milan, have recently
confirmed that the company will go public later this year. The Italian CEO Marco Tronchetti Provera
made the announcement, and Pirelli is likely to be listed once again on the the Borsa Italiana, which has been later confirmed by the Financial Times (read Pirelli tyres will race to market with new hands at the wheel).
The event will not mark a debut as the company was formerly listed on the Milan Stock Exchange until
2015 when it was taken over by ChemChina. Although no dates have yet been confirmed, it is
thought that the listing will happen before 2018 so as to take advantage of the market opportunities
available from the fourth quarter of this year. The upcoming Pirelli IPO is really big, Pirelli to overtake AIB with largest European IPO this year, seems to be a positive step for Pirelli which intends to use it as and opportunity to refinance its credit lines on better terms.
Pirelli: a company overview
Pirelli is one of the biggest tyre manufacturers in the world and produces a wide range of tyres for
cars, trucks, motorbikes and racing bikes. It is placed in the top end of the tyre market and has
partnerships with luxury car makers such as Lamborghini, Maserati, Pagani, Porsche, and Ferrari as
well as being an official Ferrari supplier. The company was founded in Milan in 1872 by Giovanni
Battista Pirelli and originally started out making elastic rubber products, later branching out into the
manufacturing of electronic and telecommunications cables and bicycle and car tyres. Eventually
the company began to specialise only in tyres and now it has 19 manufacturing sites in 13 countries
and a network of approximately 12,500 distributors and retailers worldwide.
Pirelli has provided racing tyres for sporting competitions for over a century, starting in 1907 when
Prince Scipione Borghese won the Beijing to Paris motor race with Pirelli tyres. Nowadays Pirelli
tyres are used in hundreds of racing championships and Pirelli supplies tyres exclusively for
numerous competitions, including the Maserati Cup, world superbike championships, and the
Ferrari Challenge. Pirelli is also the sole tyre supplier for Formula 1 and has been since 2011. The
competition uses the Pzero racing tyres which uses a colour-coded system to differentiate between
the tyres different kinds of track conditions (ranging from wet to dry).
The Pirelli Calendar
Quite apart from the the realm of tyres and motor sports, Pirelli is also famous for the cultural
significance of its annual calendar, known as 'The Cal', which attracts media attention from the
worlds of fashion and celebrity. The Cal is considered highly exclusive as it is gifted by Pirelli to
only a selection of privileged customers and VIPS and is therefore not possible for the general
public to buy a copy. The annual calendar, which began in the mid-1960s, stirred up press interest in
the early years because of its use of pin-up style photos of skimpily dressed models, whereas
editions in recent years have moved towards more modern kind of statement in keeping with the
zeitgeist. In the 2016 edition the chosen photographer, Annie Lebowitz, captured pictured of
women famous for their “professional, social, cultural, sporting and artistic accomplishment”. The
2017 calendar was shot by Peter Lindburgh and contained pictures of fully clothed actors of all ages
with minimal or no makeup. The 2018 version will, for the second time in its history, have an all
black cast and feature an Alice's Adventures in Wonderland theme. Explaining his choice to
combine these ideas the photographer, Tim Walker, said that he chose this theme because “There
has never been a black Alice, so I wanted to push how fictional fantasy figures can be represented
and explore evolving ideas of beauty”.