Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc.'s board of directors unanimously rejected the latest unsolicited bid for its shares by The Men's Wearhouse Inc., but left the door open for the rival retailer to make one more offer before consummating its acquisition of Eddie Bauer.
In a letter to The Men's Wearhouse (MW) President and CEO Douglas S. Ewert, Jos. A Bank (JOSB) Chairman Robert N. Wildrick said his board had decided MW’s latest offer of $63.50 was inadequate, but was willing to meet to determine “the highest price you are prepared to pay in an acquisition of Jos. A. Bank.”
“Time is of essence, and we would like to understand your ability to proceed quickly with your proposal. Given the compelling nature of the Eddie Bauer transaction from a shareholder value creation standpoint, and in light of its certainty of closing, we are only prepared to give you a limited amount of time to come forward with your best offer.”
JOSB said that the Federal Trade Commission on Thursday granted early termination of the waiting period under the Hart−Scott−Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 with respect to proposal to acquire Eddie Bauer’s parent company Everest Holdings LLC from from Golden Gate Capital.
“The financing for the Jos. A. Bank acquisition of Everest is proceeding on track, and that the company expects to market and place the high yield bonds promptly,” JOSB’s statement read. “The bridge loan committed to by Goldman Sachs remains fully committed and, subject to its terms and conditions, will be available to Jos. A. Bank to finance the Everest transaction.”