VF Corporation to buy Timberland for $43 per share
VF Corporation, a leader in branded lifestyle apparel, and The Timberland Company jointly announced that they have signed a definitive merger agreement. VF will pay Timberland shareholders $43 per share, representing a total enterprise value of approximately $2 billion net of cash acquired. The merger agreement was unanimously approved by both companies' Boards of Directors.
Timberland is a global footwear and apparel company with expected 2011 revenues of $1.6 billion, over half of which are generated internationally.
"The Timberland brand is synonymous with high quality outdoor footwear and apparel," said Eric Wiseman, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of VF Corporation. "We believe the unique rugged outdoor positioning of the Timberland brand will perfectly complement the premium, technical positioning of The North Face brand, while the Smartwool brand will provide us with a leadership position in a new category. This acquisition will continue the transformation of VF's portfolio, propelling VF's Outdoor & Action Sports businesses to 50% of total revenues." He continued, "This will be a winning combination, leveraging VF's international and direct-to-consumer platforms to drive growth in the Timberland and Smartwool brands globally. At the same time, VF will benefit from Timberland's rugged outdoor footwear expertise, international penetration in markets such as Japan, and leadership position in sustainability."
"Timberland is proud of its rich heritage, its track record of success and its reputation as a responsible and environmentally-conscious global citizen, all of which will be preserved and enhanced by becoming part of the VF family of brands," said Jeffrey Swartz, President and Chief Executive Officer of Timberland. "VF is known for its ability to acquire and grow authentic outdoor brands, while protecting a brand's unique culture and DNA."
VF is confident in its ability to maintain Timberland's momentum by adding Timberland's strong brands to its powerful portfolio of outdoor and action sports brands, which include The North Face, Vans, JanSport, Reef, lucy, Eastpak, Napapijri and Eagle Creek.
VF is targeting 10% annual revenue growth for Timberland through:
• Leveraging VF's established international platforms in Europe, Asia and Latin America
• Leveraging VF's direct-to-consumer platform, consisting of a global base of retail stores and rapidly growing e-commerce business
• Enhancing the Timberland and Smartwool brands' apparel offerings
• Aggressively growing the women's footwear and apparel business
In addition, VF believes it can substantially increase Timberland's profitability through:
• Expense management to improve SG&A ratios;
• Supply chain capabilities to reduce sourcing costs;
• Operating disciplines of VF's highly profitable international and direct-to-consumer businesses.
"We look forward to working with Jeff and Timberland's strong team of leaders as we build our plans for the future together," concluded Mr. Wiseman.