NIKE, Inc. has reached a definitive agreement to sell its Bauer Hockey subsidiary to an investor group led by Kohlberg & Company and Canadian businessman W. Graeme Roustan for $200 million in cash. Nike expects the transaction to be completed before the end of its current fiscal year. 
“We’re pleased to have reached an agreement for Bauer with strategic buyers who have a passion for hockey and are committed to continue to invest in Bauer’s long-term growth and brand leadership,” said Nike, Inc. President and CEO Mark Parker. “Nike Bauer Hockey has been part of the Nike family for 12 years, and its team has done an incredible job. Selling this great hockey company was a tough decision but one that was in the best interests of Nike and Bauer as we each look to maximize our respective growth opportunities.”

Founded in 1927, Bauer developed the first skate with the blade attached to the boot, forever changing the game of hockey.

“Throughout the entire sale process, we were committed to find the right partner to continue moving our business forward and we have definitely found that partner,” said Mark Duggan, CEO, Nike Bauer Hockey. “Our new partners have a genuine enthusiasm for the hockey industry and we are confident their commitment will only strengthen our No. 1 position in the marketplace.”

“Bauer is the most coveted hockey brand in the world, dating back to 1927, and is a big part of hockey’s DNA,” said Roustan, who will serve as chairman of Bauer Hockey. “It is a personal honor and privilege to have the opportunity to work with the existing dedicated team of professionals at Bauer and support this great company’s continued industry leadership well into the future.”

Nike decided to divest Bauer, acquired in 1995, following a strategic review of the company’s subsidiary businesses. As part of the company’s long-term growth strategy, Nike is optimizing its portfolio of subsidiary brands, which contribute more than $2 billion in annual revenues, to ensure the company is investing in the greatest growth opportunities with the highest returns.

Under the terms of the deal, Bauer will continue to use the Nike Bauer Hockey trademark on existing products for a period of up to two years.

Lazard acted as financial advisor, and Tonkon Torp acted as legal advisor to Nike in the transaction. Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison acted as legal advisor to Kohlberg and Mr. Roustan.