Macy’s stock surged by 10% on Friday after a report by the Wall Street Journal said that Hudson’s Bay, the New York and Toronto-based parent for Saks Fifth Avenue and Lord & Taylor might have an interest in buying the retailer.
A source who is familiar with the situation confirmed that an offer was made but the discussions are just preliminary. Both a Hudson’s Bay and Macy’s spokesperson said they could not comment on speculation and rumors.
However, questions about Macy’s future have swirled for a number of months and intensified during recent weeks. On Thursday, a report in a New York paper said that Terry Lundgren the longtime Macy’s CEO, who is stepping down later in 2017, might look to sell it prior to his term as CEO ends.
In January, Macy’s announced its plans to shutter 68 stores as well as cut over 10,000 jobs after disappointing sales in its holiday shopping season.
Adding to its pain, the company was attacked last year by President Trump, and some believe that Trump’s feud with Macy’s has hurt the company’s sales.
Macy’s at one time sold a Trump line of clothing. However, the retailer stopped selling the line during 2015 after the first of a number of comments by Trump about immigrants from Mexico during the start of his campaign for the presidency.
Trump called for people to boycott Macy’s and padded himself on the back on Twitter when Macy’s started reporting disappointing sales during 2016. However, even if supporters of Trump did abandon the retailer, it is not the sole reason the company has struggled.
Macy’s is amongst a number of department stores – Kohl’s, Nordstrom, J.C. Penney, and Sears – that found it hard to compete with Amazon the online giant, mass merchandisers such as Target and Walmart and upstart fast fashion chains such as Zara and H&M.
This has made Macy’s a target for a takeover and if the retailer does end up merging into Hudson’s Bay, it would reunite Lord & Taylor and Macy’s under the same corporate roof.
The two briefly were part of the same business after the parent of Macy’s, then Federated, acquired Lord & Taylor’s owner in 2005.
However, in 2006, Lord & Taylor was sold by Federated to NRDC and then Hudson’s Bay was purchased by NRDC in 2008.
However, there could be others in the hunt to acquire Macy’s. One industry analysts wondered if there was another company out there searching for a retailer such as Macy’s.
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