Shareholder group bids to take Hudson’s Bay private for $1.74 bln

A group of shareholders of Hudson’s Bay Co, including Executive Chairman Richard Baker, has offered to take the Canadian department store operator private, according to a news release.

The proposed deal reflects a purchase price of $9.45 per unit in cash, representing a total value of $1.74 billion, Reuters reported.

The group, which owns a combined 57 percent interest in Hudson’s Bay, includes U.S. private equity firm Rhône Capital, which in 2017 agreed to invest US$500 million in the company.

It also includes WeWork Property Advisors, which in the same year agreed to buy Hudson’s Bay’s flagship Lord & Taylor building in New York for US$850 million.

The deal is conditional on the sale, announced today, of Hudson’s Bay’s stake in its German real estate joint venture, and divestment of its related retail joint venture, to Signa for $1.5 billion.

Baker said while the group continues to believe in Hudson’s Bay’s long-term potential, the company faces significant challenges, risks and uncertainties in today’s retail environment that are best addressed in a private market setting.”

Hudson’s Bay, established in 1670, was taken over in 2008 by Baker’s U.S. private equity firm NRDC Equity Partners, which already owned Lord & Taylor.