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Mergers & Acquisitions

It’s not easy to stay on top of the latest company realignments in the retail industry. It’s a volatile environment — across retailer segments as well as solution provider organizations. As soon as the announcements are made, Retail TouchPoints publishes an article covering the news, in this Mergers & Acquisitions section. Learn about the latest developments here.

GameStop Will Sell Spring Mobile Division For $700 Million

  • Published in News Briefs
GameStop is taking its biggest step toward exiting mobile phone and services sales, selling its Spring Mobile division to Prime Communications L.P. for approximately $700 million. Spring Mobile owns and operates 1,289 AT&T wireless stores across the U.S. Currently, Prime Communications owns and operates 600 AT&T stores in 22 states,…
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Ulta Beauty Acquires AI, AR Startups Amid Digital Acceleration

Ulta Beauty has taken both the investment and acquisition routes as it accelerates digital innovation and personalization. During its annual analyst and investor conference, the retailer revealed that it has invested in digital workflow partner Iterate and online booking tool partner Spruce, and recently acquired QM Scientific and GlamST, technology startups in AI and augmented reality. The moves from Ulta mirror those of Nordstrom, which acquired two retail technology startups early in 2018: digital selling platform provider BevyUp and conversational commerce app MessageYes. Like Nordstrom, the Ulta investments indicate that the company is serious about leveraging digital technologies and gaining third-party expertise in the fields of AI and augmented reality.

NCR Acquires StopLift To Address Self-Checkout Theft And In-Store Shrink

NCR Corporation has acquired StopLift Checkout Vision Systems, an intelligent computer vision systems provider for retail POS platforms. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. With the growth of Amazon Go and other competing technologies in the cashierless self-checkout space, NCR is reinforcing its focus on self-checkout solutions.

Hibbett Sports Acquires City Gear In Deal Worth Up To $113 Million

Hibbett Sports has acquired fellow athletic specialty retailer City Gear. Hibbett will pay $88 million in cash at the deal’s closing — and could potentially pay up to an additional $25 million over the next two years, depending on whether City Gear reaches certain performance-based targets. The Birmingham, Ala.-based Hibbett operates 1,059 stores in 35 states, primarily in the Southeast and South. With City Gear, Hibbett gets 135 more stores in 15 states and further expands into the Midwest region. Geographic overlap between each company’s stores “is not significant,” leading to future opportunities for store growth, according to a company statement.

Bebe Stores Unveils Role In Brookstone Acquisition

Although Brookstone initially announced that it had been purchased by Bluestar Alliance and Apex Digital in October after filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in August, another unlikely party has unveiled its role in the deal. Women’s apparel retailer bebe stores partnered with Bluestar and Apex to acquire the Brookstone brand and related assets. On the surface, bebe and Brookstone don’t seem like companies that complement each other’s businesses. While bebe is known for selling dresses, jumpsuits and tops, Brookstone is a specialty retailer that sells unique gadgets and gift items such as personal massagers, pillows, headphones and speakers.

ShopRunner Acquires Spring To Bring 2,000+ Brands Into Mobile Shopping Experience

ShopRunner has acquired Spring, a mobile shopping destination designed to enable customers to shop directly from more than 2,000 brands in a single-cart experience. Terms of the deal have not been disclosed. ShopRunner teams with mid- to high-end retailers to offer its paying members free two-day shipping and free returns on their sites, taking a small cut of each purchase.

Famous Footwear Parent Acquires Vionic Group For $360 Million

For the second time in two weeks, major footwear brands are growing by acquisition. Caleres, a portfolio of global footwear brands including Famous Footwear, Sam Edelman and Diane Von Furstenberg, has acquired Vionic Group, a maker of supportive footwear and orthotic shoe inserts, for $360 million. Earlier this month, footwear giant DSW partnered with Authentic Brands to acquire Camuto Group for $375 million. The move is designed to further expand Caleres' stable of shoe brands and give the company "additional access to the growing contemporary comfort footwear category," according to a company statement. Vionic has generated approximately 25% of its total sales online over the past 12 months, indicating that the orthotics manufacturer could give Caleres a strong disruptor to power its digital strategies going forward.

Mi9 Retail Puts MyWebGrocer In Shopping Cart

Mi9 Retail will purchase MyWebGrocer (MWG), a software and digital media company serving the grocery and CPG industries. Details of the acquisition have not been reported. The MWG solution adds new e-Commerce, order management and click-and-collect functionalities to Mi9’s offerings, which include demand management, price and promotions management and retail analytics solutions.

Walmart Buys Bare Necessities In Latest Digital Acquisition

Just a few weeksafter Walmart acquired Eloquii, a plus-sized fashion retailer, the retail giant has reeled in its next digitally native brand. Walmart acquired Bare Necessities, an e-Commerce intimates and sleepwear retailer, for an undisclosed sum. Walmart has prioritized fashion as a core element of its e-Commerce experience, ever since overhauling Walmart.com in May and introducing the Lord & Taylor flagship e-Commerce site. These changes, as well as the company’s continued spree of acquisitions, starting with Jet.com in 2016, are designed to give Walmart access to younger Millennial customers who do not normally shop on its web site. The company also partnered with comedian and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres to launch a women's fashion line in August.

DSW And Authentic Brands Acquire Camuto Group For $375 Million

DSW and Authentic Brands Group have acquired Camuto Group for approximately $375 million, including the licensing rights for the Jessica Simpson footwear business, as well as the footwear and handbag licenses for Lucky Brand and Max Studio. As part of the $375 million deal: DSW will contribute approximately $56 million to acquire a 40% stake in the intellectual property (IP) of Camuto Group’s proprietary brands; Authentic Brands will contribute approximately $84 million to acquire a 60% majority stake in the Camuto brand IP; DSW will contribute approximately $200 million to acquire all of Camuto Group’s global production, sourcing and design infrastructure, including operations in Brazil and China, a new distribution center in New Jersey, in addition to existing working capital of approximately $100 million.

DOJ Gives Preliminary Approval For $69 Billion CVS-Aetna Deal

The Department of Justice gave CVS Health preliminary approval to complete its $69 million merger with Aetna, taking the pharmacy retailer one step closer to its goal of becoming a data-driven health care company with a personal, individualized touch. CVS wants to combine its pharmacies with Aetna’s insurance business in hopes of lowering costs for insurance, prescription drugs and patient care, while providing greater price transparency to consumers in an industry that isn’t often known for that.

Barnes & Noble Gets Serious About Considering A Sale

Barnes & Noble (B&N) has entered a formal review process to evaluate strategic alternatives, including a potential sale. The decision follows interest from “multiple parties” to acquire the company, including Chairman and Founder Leonard Riggio, according to a company statement. The book store retailer also is working to thwart a hostile bid, after an unidentifiable number of parties recently began acquiring company stock. By offering preferred shares at a 50% discount to current shareholders, the company will prevent any party from accumulating 20% or more of common shares.

Walmart Acquires Plus-Size E-Commerce Fashion Retailer Eloquii

Walmart has acquired Eloquii, a plus-sized fashion retailer, marking yet another business the retail giant can add to its collection of digitally native brands. Financial terms of the acquisition have not been disclosed, but Eloquii is reportedly valued at roughly $100 million, according to CNBC. With the acquisition, Walmart is making a play into a plus-size fashion market that has plenty of room for growth. The women's plus-size market reached $21.4 billion in 2016 — less than half of its market potential of $46 billion, according to Coresight Research.The market value for women's plus-size clothing rose 23% per year between 2012 and 2016, more than double the 9.9% growth for apparel overall.
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