Restoration Hardware buyout gets green light
Corte Madera, Calif.-based Restoration Hardware received shareholder approval for a planned buyout by private equity group Catterton Partners for about $179 million, a deal that was challenged at several points by Sears Holdings.
The company said that more than 99 percent of votes cast by shareholders at a meeting held yesterday were in favor of the deal. Catterton will purchase Restoration Hardware’s outstanding shares for approximately $4.50 in cash.
The deal is expected to be completed by next week.
“We are pleased with the outcome of today’s vote and appreciate the strong support demonstrated by our shareholders,” said Gary Friedman, Restoration Hardware’s chairman, president and CEO.
Restoration Hardware also announced that it reached a preliminary agreement for the settlement of a shareholder complaint filed in the Superior Court of the State of California. The class action complaint was filed against Restoration Hardware, each of its directors, Catterton Partners and certain shareholders participating in the deal.
According to the settlement, Restoration Hardware will pay $3.7 million, approximately 10 cents to 13 cents a share, to shareholders involved in the complaint.
Board member Raymond Hemmig said that the lawsuit was without merit, but settling would expedite the merger agreement. The settlement is conditional on successfully closing the merger.
Oregon home builder files for bankruptcy
One of Oregon’s larges home builders, Legend Homes, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
Under the name Legend Homes/Matrix Development, the builder filed for bankruptcy protection at the Portland, Ore., United States District Court yesterday, following a drop-off in home sales and a poor return on land investments in the region.
The primary reason for the filing, according to a statement from the company, was to protect the company’s home building operations from margin calls on land holdings by lenders. Margin calls result when properties drop in value, pushing loan ratios beyond the terms of the original loan.
“Because of recent issues related to the national credit crisis, we understand the need of our financial partners to stay viable and also stay within federal mandates. Yet we had to make this necessary move to protect our interests,” said Legend Homes’ president Jim Chapman in a statement.
The company has yet to receive court approval of its bankruptcy plan, but the builder expects to emerge from bankruptcy “by year end.”
National Hardware Show has new director
Dean Russo has left Reed Exhibitions, where he oversaw the National Hardware Show, Lawn & Garden World and the Homewares show.
Russo had served as group vp-Reed, taking over the day-to-day business and financial operations of the National Hardware Show in January. He attended the 2008 show in Las Vegas May 6 to 8, (click here for video) which had seen an attendance increase over the 2007 show in Orlando, according to organizers.
Russo has been replaced by Ed Several, who was promoted to group vp-Reed in early June. In addition to overseeing the National Hardware Show, Several will continue to be responsible for other Reed properties — the PGA Merchandise Show, the PGA Fall Expo and the Outdoor Sports Show.
The company has not made an official statement on the departure of Russo but said it was preparing an announcement to be released in coming days.