Authentic Brands Group reported it entered a period of exclusivity and made a binding offer to purchase Boardriders, the parent of Quiksilver, Billabong, Roxy, DC Shoes, RVCA, Element, VonZipper, and Honolua. Boardrider is owned and managed by Oaktree Capital Management, L.P. Terms were not disclosed.
Boardriders has long been rumored to be on the selling block. In early March, Bloomberg reported that Authentic Brands was nearing a deal to acquire the company for $1.3 billion. A Moody’s report published in late February indicated that Authentic had arranged financing to support an acquisition. Authentic said the acquisition “would strategically diversify and expand its portfolio.”
“As an early believer in the global and commercial appeal of action sports, this brings me back to the roots of my early career,” said Jamie Salter, founder, chairman and CEO of Authentic. “Along with the great brands and impressive global reach that will come with this acquisition, we see Boardriders’ potential as a thriving online marketplace under Authentic’s ownership. With Boardriders’ proven retail playbook, we also see tremendous opportunities to accelerate the expansion of its shop-in-shops, branded retail stores, wholesale and e-commerce worldwide.”
Boardriders’ portfolio generates $2.9 billion in retail sales annually through a global multichannel distribution network of 500-plus owned retail stores, 7,000 wholesale accounts and e-commerce in 35 countries. The acquisition would include Surf Dive ‘n Ski, a lifestyle retailer in Australia with a fleet of over 80 locations and an e-commerce platform.
“We are proud of our deep connection to the global action sports community, industry-leading brands and world-class teams,” said Arne Arens, CEO of Boardriders. “Under Authentic’s ownership, Boardriders will be uniquely positioned to expand the reach of our iconic brands to millions of consumers, capture market share in our core categories and grow white spaces, including premium athleisure, training and lifestyle.”
The acquisition is subject to the consultation of certain Boardriders employee representatives, the signing of the definitive agreement and certain standard closing conditions and approvals. If all approvals are secured, Authentic’s acquisition of Boardriders is expected to be finalized in Q3 2023.
BofA Securities and Goldman Sachs are financial advisors, and Latham & Watkins LLP is the legal advisor to Authentic. Moelis & Company, LLC is a financial advisor, and Kirkland & Ellis LLP is a legal advisor to Boardriders and Oaktree.
Authentic’s portfolio includes Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, Muhammad Ali, Shaquille O’Neal, David Beckham, Dr. J, Greg Norman, Neil Lane, Thalia, Sports Illustrated, Reebok, Eddie Bauer, Spyder, Volcom, Airwalk, Nautica, Izod, Brooks Brothers, Barneys New York, Judith Leiber, Ted Baker, Hervé Léger, Frye, Juicy Couture, Vince Camuto, Lucky Brand, Aéropostale, Forever 21, Nine West, Jones New York, Tretorn, Prince, Van Heusen, Arrow, Hickey Freeman, Hart Schaffner Marx, and Thomasville.
Image courtesy ABG/Billabond