Armstrong sells off overseas businesses
Armstrong World Industries, the ceiling, wall, and suspension system manufacturer, is selling its EMEA and Pacific Rim businesses to Knauf International GmbH for $330 million.
After closing adjustments, fees, and taxes, Armstrong said the sale will net the company about $250 million in cash. The deal is expected to close in mid-2018, the Lancaster, Pa.-based company reported. Proceeds from the sale will be used to focus on its Americas business.
The sale includes the businesses of the Wave joint venture in EMEA and the Pacific Rim, as well as Armstrong France and Wave France. Armstrong forecasts that the EMEA and Pacific Rim businesses will have combined 2017 net sales of $425 million.
“While I was pleased with the recent progress that our EMEA and Pacific Rim teams were making, we ultimately concluded that industry consolidation in those markets is required to provide the scale and efficiencies necessary to achieve acceptable and sustainable returns," said Vic Grizzle, CEO of Armstrong World Industries.
“Our exit from EMEA and the Pacific Rim will be a step in an ongoing transformation plan that includes significant investment and innovation in high end mineral fiber manufacturing along with expanding capabilities in Architectural Specialties, all in the Americas where we already hold leading share positions and unrivaled capabilities,” Grizzle added.
Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores continue Make-A-Wish partnership
Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores is partnering with the Make-A-Wish Foundation for the holiday season.
During “Wish Week,” shoppers can purchase items at Black Friday prices before Thanksgiving. From Nov. 16 to 22 at all Sears Outlets and from November 19 to 22 at all Sears Hometown, Appliance and Hardware Stores and Home Appliance Showrooms, customers can make a $5 donation to Make-A-Wish to receive exclusive Black Friday pricing.
“Through our Wish Week promotion, we hope to give our customers the opportunity to avoid the crowds on Thanksgiving and sleep in on Black Friday,” said Will Powell, CEO and president of Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores. “Our customers have told us they value giving back and their support of our annual holiday Make-A-Wish campaigns over the past years have been incredible.”
In addition to Wish Week, Sears is accepting donations for Make-A-Wish through Dec. 31 to help Make-A-Wish reach its goal of granting the wish of every child diagnosed with a life-threatening medical condition.
The partnership between Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores and Make-A-Wish started in 2014. The retailer said it expects to surpass $5 million in donations by the end of their 2017 holiday campaign, “Season of Wishes,” bringing the total number of life changing wishes granted to more than 500.
“Every year we strive to give more because we have seen the positive impact a wish has on a child facing a life-threatening illness,” Powell said. “Our store owners, franchisees and associates believe we have a responsibility to do good things to support the community we serve.”
Powell also said that the partnership with Make-A-Wish inspired Sears Hometown and Outlet stores to create its own program in 2016, called SHOwecare, “to seek more opportunities to support communities across a variety of organizations’ charitable campaigns on the local and national level.”
Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores is an independent national retailer, with a license to use the Sears brand name, primarily focused on selling home appliances, lawn and garden equipment, tools and hardware. As of Nov. 10, Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores and its dealers and franchisees operated 924 stores across all 50 states as well as in Puerto Rico and Bermuda.
HBSDealer Stock Watch: Strong Friday finish
Industry stocks closed out the week on a positive note, as two-thirds of home improvement and building supply companies registered gains. JELD led the way with a 2.79% increase while BLDR was up 2.52%. Meanwhile, SHLD fell 7.44%.