PVH Corp. in talks to take Australian distribution private

PVH Corporation has entered into talks with its Australian distributor Gazal Corporation on Tuesday, as the US owner of Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger looks to take the Australian arm private.


Calvin Klein

Fairfax Media first reported early Tuesday morning that Gazal was in talks with the American clothing group to privatise the company, with whom it has 50-50 joint venture to operate its key brands in Australia.

At market opening, Gazal then confirmed that talks were underway, adding that negotiations were in "the very earliest stages".

"Gazal is in preliminary discussions with PVH around the potential for a proposal by PVH for a privatisation of Gazal," the company said in statement to the Australian Stock Exchange.

"The discussions may not continue and, if they do, might not result in a proposal. If a proposal is made, it may not result in a transaction."

PVH, which owns brands including Van Heusen, Pierre Cardin, Tommy Hilfiger and Calvin Klein, already has a 21.65 per cent stake in Gazal.

Other Gazal shareholders include the firm's executive director, Michael Gazal, who owns almost 40 per cent of the company, as well as the firm Investors Mutual, which owns 10 per cent, while retailer Harvey Norman owns 9.3 per cent.

Gazal shares shot up 13 per cent to close at $4.75 on wind of the proposed changes.

Gazal's adjusted net profit grew 23 per cent to AU$5.7 million for the seven-month period to March 21. In late August, PVH Corp reported a 38 percent rise in second-quarter profit, while net sales rose 13.2 percent to US$2.22 billion.

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