Ted Baker set for £211m takeover by Reebok's owner




  • In Business
  • 2022-08-16 14:26:57Z
  • By BBC
Ted Baker pic
Ted Baker pic  

Ted Baker, the UK fashion retailer, has agreed to a takeover by the US company that owns Reebok, Juicy Couture and the image rights to Elvis Presley.

Authentic Brands Group has offered to buy Ted Baker for £211m, ending months of speculation over the firm's fate.

Ted Baker, which has just under 400 stores and concessions around the world, put itself up for sale in April.

It follows a difficult few years for the company, though it recently reported its losses had narrowed.

In 2019, Ted Baker's founder Ray Kelvin - who had been chief executive since the company's launch in 1987 - resigned over claims he presided over a culture of "forced hugging".

He has denied all allegations of misconduct. In 2020, the company was found to have overstated the value of its stock by £58m.

Like other high street retailers, Ted Baker was forced to temporarily close its doors during the coronavirus lockdowns, but it is attempting a turnaround as demand for office wear and clothing for social events returns.

Sales for the year to 29 January jumped by more than 20% to £428.2m. Pre-tax losses shrank from to £44.1m from £107.7m in the year before.

Ted Baker saw its share price jump by 17% to 109p after it confirmed the offer from Authentic Brands.

Ted Baker's interim chairwoman Helena Feltham said the board believed Authentic Brands's offer of 110p per share "balances the company's growth prospects with the risks of the uncertain economic environment in which the business is operating".

Authentic Brands is headquartered in New York and manages a large range of brands such as Juicy Couture, famed for its velour tracksuits, sportswear brand Reebok as well as cultural icons such as Elvis and Marilyn Monroe.

It also has a partnership with David Beckham where it co-owns and manages the former England footballer's "global brand".

Authentic Brands said it "believes Ted Baker is a distinctive British lifestyle brand with a rich, authentic heritage and strong worldwide customer recognition" and it "will be a good custodian" of the name.

The takeover of a UK company by a US firm was announced as another British business became the target of an overseas buyer.

Cybersecurity specialist Darktrace said it was in early stage talks with US private equity firm Thoma Bravo. Darktrace's share price soared by 27% to 528.2p after the UK company confirmed discussions.

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