New York City and Seattle — Authentic Brands Group, LLC (ABG), a global brand owner, marketing and entertainment company, and SPARC Group, LLC (SPARC), a leading retail enterprise, have agreed to purchase Eddie Bauer, the iconic American outdoor brand, from PSEB Group (PSEB), an operating company owned by San Francisco-based private equity investment firm Golden Gate Capital. The transaction is expected to close by June 1, 2021. No financial terms were disclosed.
ABG will own Eddie Bauer’s intellectual property, and the brand’s core operating business will become a part of the SPARC portfolio of brands. Following the close of the transaction, SPARC’s operating platform will include Eddie Bauer, Brooks Brothers, Lucky Brand, Nautica, Aéropostale and Forever 21.
“Eddie Bauer has a 100-year history of unparalleled authority in the outdoor space,” says Jamie Salter, founder, chairman and CEO of ABG. “The global outdoor market opportunity has grown exponentially over the last year and we are ready to hit the ground running and guide this brand into new frontiers in partnership with SPARC, Damien and the rest of the Eddie Bauer team.”
After the acquisition is complete, Eddie Bauer will become part of the SPARC organization. Eddie Bauer will remain headquartered in the Seattle area under the leadership of current President Damien Huang. The Eddie Bauer team, in partnership with SPARC, will manage the brand’s sourcing, product design and development, wholesale, planning and allocation, and e-commerce as well as its 300 stores, which are principally located in the U.S. and Canada. Eddie Bauer has a robust and growing e-commerce business, which drove nearly half of the brand’s annual retail sales last year.
ABG will tap into the essence of Eddie Bauer and leverage the brand’s technical performance attributes to extend into new outdoor categories and distribution. International growth is an important part of the brand strategy, with territory expansion opportunities in LATAM, Europe and APAC. Near-term launches in China and Korea will drive the initial phase of that growth.
Guggenheim Securities LLC is serving as financial advisor to PSEB and Golden Gate Capital.
For 100 years, Eddie Bauer has been an outdoor brand offering performance outerwear, apparel, footwear, accessories and gear. Eddie Bauer has more than 300 stores in the United States, Canada, Germany, Japan and other international markets.
SOURCE: Authentic Brands Group