Jos. A. Bank Eddie Bauer: Bank Buys Bauer in $825 Million Deal

Image: Jos. A. Bank Eddie Bauer: Bank Buys Bauer in $825 Million Deal

Friday, 14 Feb 2014 04:29 PM

By Ken Mandel

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Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc. is buying the parent company of Eddie Bauer in an $825 million cash-and-stock deal that will broaden its offerings.

Jos. A. Bank will pay $564 million in cash for Everest Topco, and will issue 4.7 million new shares, the company said in a statement.

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The purchase comes as Jos. A. Bank is being pursued by Men's Wearhouse, though the company said it had sought Eddie Bauer for a while.

"We have long admired the Eddie Bauer brand and its widespread appeal among those with active lifestyles and excitement about the outdoors, a large and growing customer base that overlaps significantly with ours," Jos. A. Bank Chairman Robert N. Wildrick said in a statement.

The Eddie Bauer brand was launched in 1920 in Seattle, with a focus on more outdoor and casual clothes, while Jos A. Bank sells mostly business attire. Eddie Bauer has more than 370 stores in the U.S., Canada, and Japan. Jos A. Bank has 629 stores in 44 states and the District of Columbia.

Everest Topco paid $286 million at a bankruptcy auction to buy Eddie Bauer in 2009.

"With this transaction, two historic 20th century American apparel brands, dedicated to quality, which have been serving different lifestyle aspects of a demographically similar family of customers, now combine to leverage their legacies and their strengths," Jos. A. Bank CEO Neal Black said in a statement.

Last month, Men's Wearhouse made an unsolicited cash offer of $57.50 a share for all outstanding shares of Jos. A. Bank. The offer was rejected Jan. 17.

"Our Board of Directors firmly believes that the Men's Wearhouse offer is inadequate and significantly undervalues Jos. A. Bank and its near- and long-term potential," the company said in a statement at the time.

The rejection went both ways, as Men's Wearhouse rejected a November offer to be bought by Jos. A Bank.

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