Neiman Marcus considers selling

Neiman Marcus is considering putting itself up for sale and at least one company announced its interest in buying the luxury goods retailer.

The Neiman Marcus Group Inc. said it is “exploring various strategic alternatives to enhance shareholder value,” including selling itself, but that it might end up doing nothing, The Associated Press reports.

The Dallas-based company hired Goldman Sachs & Co. as its financial adviser. The company said it would probably have nothing further to say until its board approves a deal.

France’s largest department store group, Galeries Lafayette, said it is considering a takeover bid for Neiman Marcus Group, the International Herald Tribune reports.

Neiman Marcus Group operates Neiman Marcus and Bergdorf Goodman stores and runs catalog and Internet businesses under the Neiman Marcus, Horchow and Bergdorf Goodman brands.

The luxury stores have fared well recently, even during a sluggish economy. February same-store sales rose 7.7% from a year earlier, better than analysts had predicted.

Last year, the company earned $205 million—nearly double the year before—on sales of $3.55 billion.

In November, the company announced the sale of its direct-marketing cookware business for an undisclosed amount.

Neiman Marcus is the latest department store chain to look for a buyer in the quickly consolidating retail industry. Last month Federated Department Stores Inc. agreed to buy rival May Department Stores Co.

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