bebe stores Acquires Brookstone
Fast-fashion brand bebe has partnered with private equity firm Bluestar Alliance to acquire the Brookstone brand and related assets. The acquisition opens new doors for wholesale distribution of Brookstone products to some of the largest retailers across the U.S. The Associated Press reports as part of the deal that 30 Brookstone airport store locations will remain open, and 350 jobs will be retained.
“Brookstone is a unique brand with strong growth potential,” stated Manny Mashouf, CEO, bebe stores, in a statement to the press. “We're pleased to expand our already successful relationship with Bluestar and can see the potential synergies with other brands in its portfolio.”
Total Retail’s Take: When I think of bebe, one of the last acquisition targets I would have thought of for the brand is Brookstone. However, this unique pairing, with seemingly different customer bases and diverse product assortments, opens up a whole new lifestyle brand market for the both retailers. Also, considering the struggles of both brands — bebe closed all of its brick-and-mortar stores to avoid a bankruptcy filing last year, while Brookstone did file for bankruptcy protection earlier this year — perhaps combining resources will result in a stronger unified company.
“This investment represents our combined efforts to create value for bebe stores by expanding the scope of our operations, and we will continue to look for opportunities that leverage our tax assets and create value for our shareholders,” said Nick Capuano, chairman of bebe stores.