The buy for Saks Inc. was finalized this week by Hudon’s Bay Co. for approximately $2.9 billion, or $16 per share. Hudson’s Bay beat out a pretty interesting betting war featuring top-name firms including Qatar, Starwood Capital, Thomas Lee, KKR & Co. and Leonard Green & Partners. The buy absolves Saks of all of its debt and gives opportunities to hone its omnichannel presence, per Saks. Hudson’s Bay Co. owns big-name retailers including Lord & Taylor, Hudson’s Bay and Zellers and tremendous experience managing brands with a global presence.
While on the topic of mergers and acquisitions, there has been quite some movement in this space recently. Qatari may have lost out on the Saks bid, but it just finalized its acquisition of French brand Printemps. Qatari-backed Divine Investments (Disa) acquired a 70 percent stake from the Deutsche Bank’s RREEF and the remaining 30 percent from the Bortelli Group in Italy, per WWD. Also, brand Nanette Lepore is allegedly in talks with Bluestar Alliance as a possible investor. The decision could be made within the next few months, per WWD.
Meanwhile, LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton made huge strides this week with the acquisition of the Hotel St-Barth Isle de France, one of the first properties in the conglomerate’s new Hotel Management division. It’s an interesting turn for LVMH, given that its forte is in developing and selling luxury products, and this new foray into hospitality is hard for some marketing experts to grasp. Nonetheless, LVMH will have a place to tote its fragrances, spirits and wines and cosmetics through its hotel portfolio, increasing awareness of all of its brands and hopefully promoting cross- and upsell opportunities.