April 17, 2012 8:52 pm

Collective Brands’ suitor list narrows, bids due later this week

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Collective Brands (NYSE:PSS) plans to collect second-round bids later this week, two sources familiar with the matter told dealReporter.

E-Land, the Korean retailer, may still be in the process, the two sources said. According to previous press reports, E-Land was prepared to table a USD 1.8bn bid for Collective. Depending on the treatment of Collective’s cash and short-term debt, the USD 1.8bn price tag would equate to about USD 20 per share, said the first source.

The Topeka, Kansas-based shoe company hired Perella Weinberg to run a sale process last August. A spokesperson for Collective would not comment on the strategic review.

A representative for E-Land did not immediately return an email requesting comment.

Wolverine Worldwide (NYSE:WWW) may also participate in the next round of bidding, added one of the two sources. The first source said it was his understanding that VF (NYSE:VFC) and Brown Shoe (NYSE:BWS) are no longer involved.

Spokespeople for Wolverine, VF, and Brown did not immediately return calls seeking comment.

Though bids had been tabled for the entire company, it was widely expected that private equity firms would be most interested in the retail side of the business, Payless Shoe Stores. Strategic bidders would be interested in the rest of the business, known as the Performance + Lifestyle Group.

Golden Gate Capital may also be hanging around the Collective sale process, the first source said. This news service had previously reported that Sun Capital was also around the process.

A spokesperson for Golden Gate Capital declined to comment.


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