Investment banker First Security Van Kasper has initiated coverage on Quiksilver Inc (NYSE:ZQK) ($15 3/8) with Buy Rating and 12-month price target of $27.Jennifer Black, apparel analyst for the investment bank and private brokerage, said: "We are initiating coverage on Quiksilver, Inc with a Buy rating and EPS estimates of $1.37 for FY00 and $1.68 for FY01. The company has implemented a number of impressive growth initiatives, which should drive strong top- and bottom-line improvements over the next few years." It has been a profitable year for Quiksilver. In June the board and surf brand announced net sales increases of 10.9 per cent and a 16.1 per cent rise in net income. Robert B. McKnight, chairman of the board and CEO, commented at the time: "This represents the twelfth consecutive quarter of double digit bottom line expansion over the past four years."Quiksilver has also bought the Australian owner of the worldwide trademark rights to the Quiksilver brand name, acquired the Gotcha license for Europe and the Hawk brand this year. In July the company announced the launch of a new women's wear range called "Alex Goes", which will be available for Spring 2001."Quiksilver has stood the test of time in a competitive specialty retail environment, and we expect it to continue doing so going forward. In our view, this is a primary reason that Quiksilver has maintained its position as a major competitor in the "board and surf" apparel industry, and we believe that it is poised for a bright and successful future," Ms Black concluded.