Bain pays $2bn for kids clothes firm Gymboree

City A.M. Reporter
CHILDREN’S clothing maker Gymboree is selling itself to buyout firm Bain Capital Partners for $1.8bn (£1.14bn), it said yesterday, as cheap valuations and clean balance sheets make specialty apparel companies attractive takeover targets.

Bain beat other private equity bidders such as Apollo Global Management, which also had been pursuing the firm, two sources familiar with the situation said.

The deal values Gymboree at $65.40 in cash and includes a “go-shop” period of 40 days until November 20 when the company can solicit rival bids.

Shares closed at $64.83 on Nasdaq, indicating the market is not anticipating a higher bid for the company.

About one third of the deal value is made up of equity and the remainder debt, one of the sources familiar with the situation said.

Private equity deal flow has increased in recent months, as financing markets have rebounded. Some buyout funds are under pressure to spend money before their investment periods end

Gymboree has topped earnings estimates for the past six quarters, helped by its successful loyalty programme.