Bear Stearns Merchant Banking (“BSMB”), a leading private equity firm focused on middle-market investments, together with founder Peter Koral and company management, has reached an agreement to sell Seven For All Mankind, LLC (“Seven For All Mankind”) to VF Corporation (NYSE: VFC) for $775 million in cash at closing. Seven For All Mankind is a leading premium denim-lifestyle brand. VF Corporation is a leader in branded lifestyle apparel including jeanswear, outdoor products, image apparel and sportswear.
BSMB has an outstanding track record of investing in leading apparel and retail brands as well as unique expertise in partnering with entrepreneurs, enabling them to build and redefine their businesses. BSMB has worked closely with Seven For All Mankind on numerous strategic initiatives including building the Company’s executive management team, developing its product extension strategy, expanding its international business and working on its upcoming entry into retail.
“The success of Seven For All Mankind demonstrates how we use our operating and sector expertise to unlock value in our investments,” said John D. Howard, Chief Executive Officer of BSMB. “We continually look to invest in strong brands, and in this instance, we identified a very successful entrepreneur whose business could flourish with the resources and expertise we could bring to the table. VF Corporation is an excellent strategic partner for Seven to continue its growth and capitalize on its extraordinary brand.”
“Our strategic partnership with BSMB has given us the opportunity to strengthen our company and expand product lines while improving operations,” said Michael Egeck, Chief Executive Officer of Seven For All Mankind. “We very much value the time spent working with BSMB. As a result of their apparel and retail expertise and track record of supporting growth initiatives, we are well-positioned for our future with VF Corporation.”
Other BSMB investments in the apparel and retail sector have included Aéropostale, New York & Company, Balducci’s, Stuart Weitzman, Transamerican Auto Parts, Vitamin Shoppe, Everything but Water and Harlem Furniture.
Lehman Brothers and Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc. acted as financial advisors to Seven For All Mankind in the transaction, and Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as legal counsel.
BSMB, the private equity affiliate of The Bear Stearns Companies Inc. (NYSE: BSC), invests private equity capital in compelling leveraged buyouts, recapitalizations and growth capital opportunities alongside superior management teams. BSMB focuses on making control or entrepreneur-driven investments, principally in middle-market retail, financial services and consumer products companies. Since its formation in 1997, BSMB has been an investor in over 50 portfolio companies. BSMB manages nearly $5 billion of private equity capital, including its current $2.7 billion institutional fund and capital dedicated to its affiliate, Bear Growth Capital Partners. Investments by BSMB include: ACA Capital Holdings (NYSE: ACA), Alter Moneta, Balducci's, CamelBak Products, Caribbean Financial Group, Cavalry Investments, Churchill Financial Holdings, Dairyland, Doral Financial Corporation (NYSE: DRL), Everything But Water, Harlem Furniture, Ironshore Inc., Multi Packaging Solutions, New York & Company (NYSE: NWY), PlayCore, Stuart Weitzman, Transamerican Auto Parts Company, Universal Hospital Services and The Vitamin Shoppe. More information about BSMB is available at www.bsmb.com.
About Seven For All Mankind
Seven For All Mankind, LLC is a leading designer and marketer of premium denim and related apparel. The Company sells its products through high-end department stores and fashion boutiques throughout the United States, as well as internationally. Founded in 2000, the Company has redefined the premium denim segment, developing a loyal customer base of women and men based on the distinctive fit and style of its products.
Melissa Daly, 212-333-3810
Seven For All Mankind
Leilani Augustine, 323-406-5456