Ted Baker accepts takeover by American Reebok owner | Ted Baker

Ted Baker has agreed a £211m takeover of the US group that owns Reebok and a stake in David Beckham’s clothing and merchandise empire.

The board of the retailer, which has more than 500 stores and concessions around the world, has recommended that shareholders approve the acquisition of Authentic Brands Group (ABG).

The 110p-a-share deal for the London-listed fashion brand, which has a market value of £167m, is well below the 160p-a-share ABG was considering in May when several potential suitors were mulling bids.

However, the value of the deal is 18% higher than the closing price of Ted Baker’s shares – which are down 35% in the past year – on Monday.

“The directors of Ted Baker consider the terms of the acquisition to be fair and reasonable,” the company said in a statement on Tuesday. “In part, the board unanimously intends to recommend that Ted Baker shareholders vote in favor.”

ABG has already secured irrevocable commitments supporting the deal from shareholders representing 50.7% of Ted Baker’s issued share capital, including shares held by its directors.

The retailer began a formal sale process in April after rejecting a number of bids from US private equity group Sycamore Partners and others.

According to a stock exchange filing from Ted Baker in early June, “a preferred counterparty”, which had been invited to conduct confirmatory due diligence, had said it no longer intended to proceed with an offer.

ABG, which is valued at $13bn (£10.8bn) after selling several stakes to US private equity in recent years, has picked up assets including Sports Illustrated magazine, Juicy Couture and brands linked to Muhammad Ali and Shaquille O ‘Neal, boxing and basketball legends.

The company said on Tuesday: “ABG intends to use its global network of established operating partners with deep industry expertise, together with its business model that combines leading brand management capabilities, to improve Ted Baker’s revenue and profitability across product categories and geographies. has for other acquired brands including Reebok, Brooks Brothers, Nautica and Eddie Bauer.

“ABG believes that Ted Baker is better suited to private ownership as this will facilitate a restructuring of the business to maximize its future potential.”

In May, Ted Baker reported a pre-tax loss of £38.4m in the year to January 30, down from £59.2m the previous year.

Ted Baker’s shares collapsed in 2018 amid difficult trading conditions for clothing brands, and a scandal over a culture of “forced hugs” under founder Ray Kelvin led to his exit from the company.

The company was then hit by the emergence of an accounting error and a series of profit warnings.

Ted Baker is attempting a turnaround under its new boss, Rachel Osborne, who took over in 2020, after its core market for suits and social wear took a hit during the Covid-19 pandemic.

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