Analyst: Limited Could Sell Express
New York City, Limited Brands Inc. is likely to either overhaul or sell its 883-store money-losing Express chain within the next two years, according to a Banc of America Securities research note.
Investors liked the news. The retailer’s stock rallied 4% today to close at $21.37 per share.
Although Banc of America Securities considers a sale or an overhaul to be the most probable outcome for Express, the firm said “we think even shutting the business would make sense, given the division’s losses and the potential multiple expansion.”
Linens ’n Things Agrees to Takeover
Clifton, N.J., Linens ’n Things has agreed to be acquired in a $1.3 billion deal that will take the chain private. The home-furnishings retailer, which has been struggling with stiff competition from discounters and specialty chains, will be acquired by a newly formed company controlled by Apollo Management. Under the terms of the agreement, Linens ’n Things stockholders are to receive $28 per share in cash.
“Apollo is investing in our concept, our company and our future, which will lead to additional new opportunities for all our associates and our business partners,” said Norman Axelrod, chairman and CEO, Linens ’n Things.
The merger is expected to close in the first or early second quarter of 2006.
Wal-Mart Opens 2nd Experimental Supercenter
Aurora, Colo., Wal-Mart stores opened an experimental “green” supercenter in Aurora, Colo., on Tuesday. The 206,00-sq.-ft. store features numerous energy-saving and environmentally friendly features, including wind and solar power, waste-oil boilers, porous pavements, radiant floor heating and fabric-duct air systems to heat and cool the building efficiently.
This is the second of two experimental stores planned by the discounter. The first, in McKinney, Texas, opened this past summer. The goal for both units was to reduce the amount of energy and natural resources required to operate and maintain the stores, reduce the amount of raw materials needed to construct the facilities, and substitute, when appropriate, renewable materials.
“Wal-Mart wants to be a leader in corporate responsibility for the environment and our shareholders,” says Pat Curran, executive VP of Wal-Mart USA. “We want to continue our efforts and education about environmental sustainability and how it applies to our business.”