Shares in retailer J Crew Group Inc jumped 28% yesterday (28 June) in their first day of trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

The company, which launched its initial public offering (IPO) on Tuesday, saw its shares rise $5.55 to close their first day at $25.55. Its initial market capitalisation was about $1.1bn.

J Crew shares will trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol 'JCG.'

The retailer, which recently launched a line of children's wear called Crewcuts and is planning a lower-priced line of casual clothes under the name Madewell, sells its clothes through its 164 retail stores, 45 factory stores, catalogues and its website.

It is hoping to use the $376m generated by its IPO to fuel its expansion, and says it plans to open up to 30 stores in fiscal 2006, then 25-35 stores annually.
Investor confidence is also boosted by the fact the firm is headed by firmer Gap boss Mickey Drexler, whose stake in the company is said to be worth more than $115m following the float.

Drexler's stock options, which can be exercised in intervals over the next nine years, are believed to be worth more than $56.6m.