Now it’s getting interesting…the bidding war for Barneys New York continues as the Jones Apparel Group (the current owners of Barneys) announced Sunday it had received amended offers from Fast Retailing, raising its unsolicited offer to $950 million in cash, and affiliates of Istithmar, increasing its bid to $900 million in cash, according to WWD.
Istithmar, a Dubai-based private equity firm, has until Wednesday to respond to Fast Retailing’s latest offer.
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Jones on June 22 entered into a definitive agreement to sell Barneys to an affiliate of Istithmar for $825 million in cash, subject to purchase adjustments. Jones was able to consider unsolicited proposals from third parties as long as they were received prior to July 22. All due diligence and negotiations with a third party will have to be completed by Aug. 11. Should Jones end its agreement with Fast Retailing, it will be required to pay the Istithmar affiliate a termination fee of $22.7 million.
Tokyo-based Fast Retailing, which owns the fast-fashion chain Uniqlo and is an investor in contemporary brand Theory, surprised the industry on July 5 by entering an unsolicited $900 million cash offer for Barneys, trumping Istithmar’s bid, which seemed relatively assured.
No matter the outcome, Jones will make a very pretty penny. The acquired Barneys in 2004 for $397.5 million.