November 26, 2013, 11:25 AM

Tables turn: Now Men’s Wearhouse wants to buy JoS A. Bank

Men’s Wearhouse offers $1.2 billion for JoS A. Bank, whose buyout offer it rejected.

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The Men’s Wearhouse Inc. and JoS A. Bank Clothiers Inc. may yet become one company, but with Men’s Wearhouse as the buyer, not the seller.

The Men’s Wearhouse issued a proposal today to buy all outstanding shares of JoS A. Bank for $55 per share, or about $1.2 billion. The offer comes less than two months after Men’s Wearhouse turned down a proposal to be acquired by JoS A. Bank at $48 per share, or around $2.3 billion. JoS A. Bank withdrew its offer Nov. 15.

"Following Jos. A. Bank's unsolicited public proposal to acquire Men's Wearhouse, our board of directors evaluated a number of alternatives to deliver value to our shareholders," says Bill Sechrest, director of Men's Wearhouse’s board.  "We believe we are the right acquirer for this combination and that our experienced management team is best positioned to execute the integration of our companies and achieve the synergies that would result." 

The Men’s Wearhouse is twice the size of JoS A. Bank in terms of sales and market valuation. But a recent analysis of Top500Guide.com data shows that JoS A. Bank has a much stronger e-commerce operation. For one, JoS A. Bank brought in $109 million in online sales last year—around 10.4% of its total sales, while The Men’s Wearhouse tallied an estimated $51.1 million in online sales—about 2.1% of its total revenue.

More on this Top 500 Insider analysis is here.

A combination of the two companies would create the fourth-largest U.S. men’s apparel retail operation, with more than 1,700 stores and sales of more than $3.5 billion, The Men’s Wearhouse says. And there would be no need for rebranding JoS A. Bank.

“JoS. A. Bank's store banner would remain in place,” Men’s Wearhouse wrote in its proposal. “Management would consist of the most qualified individuals from both companies, and Men's Wearhouse is confident that its deep-rooted corporate culture of customer service will appeal to Jos. A. Bank employees and customers, and that implementing the best practices of both companies will drive operational and financial success.”

The retailer says it’s best suited to facilitate the integration because its management team has a track record of successful acquisitions, having integrated more than 600 stores and 7,000 employees through its buyout of the Joseph Abboud, After Hours and Moores brands.

JoS A. Bank confirmed it received the proposal today and says it "would evaluate the proposal and respond in due course."

JoS A. Bank is No. 191 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide. Men's Wearhouse is No. 294.

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