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Akzo Nobel to sell Canadian paint brands

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Akzo Nobel, Netherlands-based parent of ICI Paints, has announced the sale of its Para and Crown Diamond paint brands to General Paint for an undisclosed sum.

Para and Crown Diamond both are Canadian paint brands, and General Paint is one of Canada’s largest paint manufacturers.

“We are sorry to be ending a long-standing relationship with our Para and Crown Diamond customers,” said Pierre Dufresne, president and general manager of Akzo Nobel Decorative Paints Canada.

The deal is expected to be completed on June 30. The company agreed to the sale as part of a regulatory deal in connection with its acquisition of ICI Paints late last year.

Other related divestments include the sale of the company’s Crown brand in the United Kingdom and Ireland and the sale of its Belgium-based DeKeyn brand. Those deals still are underway.

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Pier 1 makes bid for Cost Plus

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Cost Plus, the parent of home decor retailer World Market, has rejected an unsolicited takeover offer by Ft. Worth, Texas-based home decor chain Pier 1 Imports.

In a statement, Cost Plus executives called the Pier 1 proposal “highly conditional” and “not in the best interests of Cost Plus and its shareholders.”

Pier 1 offered about $88 million for the company, which sells casual home furnishings, decor, housewares and other home items similar to the assortment found in Pier 1 stores.

“We believe that the combination of Pier 1 Imports and Cost Plus is extremely compelling and would create significant value for the stakeholders of both companies,” said Alex Smith, president and CEO of Pier 1. “Given our similar customer bases and broadly similar business models, but distinct market positions, we believe Cost Plus is an excellent fit with Pier 1 Imports.”

Pier 1 saw several quarters of losses, but swung back to profitability in the first quarter. Cost Plus recorded losses of $32 million in the first quarter.

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Correction: Tractor Supply Comps

BY HBSDEALER Staff

A June 12 article in breaking news incorrectly described Tractor Supply’s comparable-store sales. The company posted a 3.4 percent increase in 2007 and a 6.5 percent decline in the first quarter of the current year.

Click here for the story.

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