Industry / Retail

Authentic Brands Group Decides Against IPO For Now

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Authentic Brands Group (ABG), the New York City–based brand stable, has decided to put off its planned IPO.

The company filed for an IPO in July. But on Monday, CEO and founder Jamie Salter (pictured) told CNBC that it’s more likely the company will go public in either 2023 or 2024.

“The IPO climate is ridiculous,” he said. “I think we would have gotten a massive valuation…maybe even more than what we sold the business for. But guess what? I’d rather be private.”

He added that he’d signed on to remain the company’s CEO for five years. He also promised “more acquisitions by the end of this year.”

The company recently announced it had acquired shoe brand Reebok from its previous owner, Adidas. Founded in 2010, ABG now manages 30 brands, accounting for $30 billion in annual retail sales.

Its stable includes Neil Lane as well as fashion and retail icons such as Brooks Brothers, J.C. Penney, Forever 21, Judith Leiber, Eddie Bauer, and Barneys New York. (Most of the retail holdings were purchased following Chapter 11 filings.) It also controls celebrity brands Elvis Presley, Shaquille O’Neal, and Muhammad Ali.

In lieu of an IPO, ABG announced that private equity fund CVC Capital Partners and hedge fund HPS Investment Partners have signed agreements to purchase significant equity stakes in the company from ABG’s current shareholders. The transaction values the company at $12.7 billion.

BlackRock Long Term Private Capital will remain ABG’s largest shareholder, a position that it’s held since 2019. Other shareholders include Simon Property Group, General Atlantic, Leonard Green & Partners, GIC, Brookfield, Lion Capital, Jasper Ridge Partners, and Shaquille O’Neal.

“We are primed to continue furthering our global presence, acquiring new entertainment and lifestyle brands, and driving organic growth for our portfolio,” said president and chief marketing officer Nick Woodhouse in a statement.

(Photo courtesy of Authentic Brands Group)

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By: Rob Bates

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