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  • INDUSTRY NEWS

    • On May 12, 2021, L Brands said that, after entertaining interest from several potential buyers, its board instead unanimously approved a tax-free spinoff of its Victoria's Secret business into a public company apart from its Bath & Body Works banner. The separation is expected to be completed in August, according to a company press release. L Brands CEO Andrew Meslow will retain that position and lead Bath & Body Works following the spinoff. Victoria's Secret CEO Martin Waters will continue to lead the stand-alone Victoria's Secret business, which includes the namesake brand and Pink. The conglomerate released preliminary first quarter results, reporting an overall 83% net sales rise to $3 billion, reflecting a 93% increase to $1.5 billion at Bath & Body Works and a 74% increase to $1.6 billion at Victoria's Secret. Comps rose 21%; 16% at Bath & Body Works and 25% at Victoria's Secret. L Brands operating income reached about $570 million $380 million at Bath & Body Works and $245 million at Victoria's Secret.
    • On May 07, 2021, it was reported, Hellman & Friedman, a global private equity firm, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire At Home Group Inc., the home decor superstore, for an all-cash transaction valued at $2.8 billion. "As we enter the next chapter for our company, Hellman & Friedman is the ideal partner to advance our At Home 2.0 long-term strategy," said Lee Bird, At Home chairman and CEO. "Together, we will have the resources and flexibility to provide our customers with a differentiated experience that meets their evolving needs. This transaction is a testament to the achievements of our team members, and I would like to thank each of them for all they do each day to contribute to the success of At Home." Under the terms of the agreement, At Home stockholders will receive $36 per share in cash, which represents a premium of approximately 17% to the company's closing stock price of $30.67 on May 4, the last trading day prior to media speculation regarding a possible transaction, and a premium of approximately 25% to the 30-day volume weighted average share price. "As the leading value retailer of home dcor offering unmatched breadth and depth of product assortment at everyday low prices, At Home is well-positioned to continue its long track record of store expansion and growth," said Erik Ragatz, Hellman & Friedman partner. "At Home's differentiated, low-cost operating model is disruptive to the traditional home channels and provides a strong opportunity for market share gain. This acquisition is consistent with Hellman & Friedman's strategy to invest in market-leading businesses with substantial runway for growth." The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021, subject to the
    • On May 06, 2021, it was reported, ODP Corp., parent of Office Depot, said its board has approved a plan to split the company into two publicly traded companies. Under the plan, ODP would retain its retail consumer and small-business products and services division, which includes some 1,100 Office Depot and OfficeMax stores and e-commerce site. ODP's Business Solutions Division contract business and independent regional office-supply distribution operations would be spun off as a new and separate company. (The business solution unit accounted for about half of the company's fiscal 2020 sales.) In addition, the new entity will also own ODP's newly formed business-to-business digital platform technology business, as well as the company's global sourcing office and its other sourcing, supply chain and logistics assets. The transaction, expected to be completed in the first half of 2022, will occur through a distribution of shares of the new company as a tax-free dividend to ODP's shareholders.
    • On May 04, 2021, it was reported, Best Buy President and Chief Operating Officer Mike Mohan is stepping down from his post, effective July 1, according to a securities filing. The retailer said it does not plan to fill the COO role after Mohan departs. Instead it plans to distribute his responsibilities around Best Buy's executive leadership team. After leaving, Mohan is set to receive $1 million in cash in lieu of annual incentive compensation for the year.