Saks Owner Hudson Bay Gets Bid to Go Private

Saks Owner Hudson Bay Gets Bid to Go Private”

"While we continue to believe in HBC's long-term potential, it has become clear that the significant challenges, risks, and uncertainties facing HBC in the rapidly evolving retail environment are best addressed in a private market setting".

"The good news about all this is that it's fixable, " Foulkes said.

Shares of Hudson's Bay rose 45% to close at C$9.25, slightly below the C$9.45 that shareholders will receive under the proposed deal.

The department store retailer also said it pursuing strategic alternatives for the Lord & Taylor business.

The HBC board has formed a special committee of independent directors to review the proposal by the shareholders group. The family group argued that the cash offer of $50 per share represented a premium of about 24% on the company's stock price when it announced its intention to go private in June 2017.

Separately, the company said it had reached an agreement for partner Signa Holding GmBH to take over the companies' German real estate and retail joint venture.

The group, which owns a combined 57 percent interest in Hudson's Bay, includes USA private equity firm Rhône Capital, which in 2017 agreed to invest US$500 million in the company.

Land and Buildings and other shareholders have criticized Hudson's Bay for not doing enough to capitalize on the value of its properties.

Last month, Hudson's Bay said it hired a financial adviser to review its Lord & Taylor's business, which it acquired in 2012, and that the process may lead to a sale or merger. Toronto-Dominion Bank is in line to win that role, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Meanwhile, Chief Executive Officer Helena Foulkes said the deal to sell the European assets allows the company to "fully focus our resources on HBC's North American operations, including our best growth opportunities - Saks Fifth Avenue and Hudson's Bay".

At the time of the Kaufhof announcement, Baker said it was part of a plan to make Saks Fifth Avenue and its Saks Off Fifth subsidiary into global brands.

It also includes WeWork Property Advisors, which in the same year agreed to buy Hudson's Bay's flagship Lord & Taylor building in NY for US$850 million.

Like many department stores, Hudson's Bay has struggled to adapt to a dramatic shift to online shopping.

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