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Restoration Hardware rejects Sears merger bid

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Specialty retailer Restoration Hardware has rejected a $4.55-per-share acquisition bid by Sears Holdings in favor of an offer of $4.50-per-share by investment group Catterton Partners. Restoration Hardware said the Sears offer came with “significant uncertainties” as its reason for favoring Catterton, adding the five cent difference was not “reasonably likely to result in a superior proposal.”

Sears had submitted its offer on Thursday, Feb. 28, the final day of the 35-day period for competing offers Restoration Hardware had set. The $179 million buyout deal from Catterton has been in the works since late 2007.

However, the terms have changed significantly since the process was started in November — at that time Catterton bid $6.70 for the retailer, while Sears Holdings countered with $6.75. That was before Restoration Hardware’s sales showed a slowdown and its stock floundered.

“With the expiration of the ‘go-shop’ period, Restoration Hardware is continuing to work with Catterton Partners to complete the merger in a timely manner,” said a statement from Restoration Hardware.

In mid-January, Restoration Hardware revealed sluggish holiday sales. The company said net revenue took a small hit, falling 1 percent to $171.5 million from $173.2 million in the same nine-week period last year.

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Hardlines technology forum slated for April

BY HBSDEALER Staff

The Hardlines Technology Forum (HTF), an annual gathering of the industry’s information technology and supply chain executives, has announced its lineup of retail panel participants for the April 21 to 24 event.

Appearing at the panel, which will be held on April 23, are Greg Linder, director of supply chain operations for True Value; Brett Hammers, vp-marketing for Orgill; Michelle Adams, director of merchandise operations planning for Lowe’s; and Kay Williams, vp-information technology for Do it Best.

The keynote presentation this year, “Mastering Your Supply Chain,” will feature Ernest Nichols, director of the FedEx Center for Supply Chain Management, and Dick Raman, president and CEO of TIE Commerce.

New to the conference this year is an educational track devoted to the business-side IT professional and presentations by Lowe’s, True Value and Do it Best on how to be a successful trading partner with their companies. Other sessions planned for the five-day conference deal with topics such as EDI, data synchronization, utilizing POS info and chargebacks.

The HTF, sponsored by the American Hardware Manufacturers Association (AHMA), will be held at the Peabody Memphis Hotel in Memphis, Tenn.

For more information, visit www.ahma.org/htf.

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Home Depot names new board member

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Albert Carey, former president and CEO of PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay North America division, has been named to the Home Depot board of directors.

The appointment brings the number of directors at Home Depot to 15.

Carey, 56, will serve as a member of the retailer’s audit and infrastructure committees.

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