Blog: Talbots finally finds J Jill buyer
Leonie Barrie | 9 June 2009
The sale of Talbots’ J Jill stores to private equity firm Golden Gate Capital, and Filene’s Basement to a unit of Men’s Wearhouse, in the space of just two days has raised hopes for the troubled US retail market.
After all, the fact several companies were vying to buy each of the retail chains suggests they still see potential for the loss-making formats and are confident they will be able to breathe new life into their investments. And while some store closures and job losses are an inevitable casualty of the deals, it is also worth noting that the new owners have promised to safeguard the vast majority of positions at the two store groups.
That said, there is also relief that Talbots has finally offloaded the white elephant it bought following a bidding war in 2006. The $75m deal announced yesterday falls way short of the $517m paid by Talbots just three years ago, and suggests the women’s wear chain was prepared to sell its J Jill unit at almost any price.
But however much money it lost on the sale, it is now free to focus on trying to turn around its core Talbots chain without the distraction of a second drain on its finances.
The retailer has already suffered more than most from the slowdown in consumer spending as it tried to refocus on its 35-plus customers. It has closed its kids', men's, and UK shops, axed 370 jobs in February, reduced working hours, changed employee benefits, cut overheads and closed stores, and intends to halve capital expenditure this year.
But even so, progress has been slow. Today the retailer unveiled plans to cut its workforce by a further 20% after swinging to a first quarter loss of US$18.8m, but said it was making “steady progress” on its turnaround.
In contrast, over the last five years Golden Gate Capital has completed around 20 multi-channel retail acquisitions – including Express – totalling in excess of $3.5bn in annual revenues. It’ll be interesting to see how it plans to build on the potential of the J Jill brand as an independent company.
Continuing our look at what lies ahead for the apparel industry and its supply chain in 2017, the panel of industry experts consulted by just-style last week tackled likely shifts in the sourcing land...
This week our focus turns to first thoughts from a panel of industry experts consulted by just-style on the challenges and opportunities likely to face the apparel supply chain in 2017, with prospects...
Welcome back after the holiday break, and from the team here at just-style I’d like to wish all our readers a happy and prosperous New Year....
Apparel sourcing is a complex process built on a mix of location, logistics, lead-time, price, compliance, risk and reliability. And it's in a constant state of flux as retailers, brands and manufactu...
- Outlook 2017 – What next for apparel sourcing?
- $1.7bn package to boost Pakistan clothing exports
- Mexico riots hit apparel retailers and shipments
- Is China about to burst its apparel trade bubble?
- M&S clothing growth – What the analysts say
- MAS Holdings planning second industrial park
- Aéropostale to reopen 500 stores across the US
- JC Penney latest retailer to shutter stores?
- M&S quality focus finally lifts clothing sales
- Target leads funding for mobile quality inspection
- Global apparel markets: product developments and innovations, October 2016
- Anti-odour clothing: fresh fashion for an active lifestyle
- Global market review of lingerie – forecasts to 2022
- Outdoor performance apparel 2016: A broader perspective
- Southeast Asia strategic sourcing review – a focus on Cambodia, Vietnam and Myanmar