Nine West Holdings Inc., Acquires Kasper Group

Nine West Holdings, Inc. announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the Kasper Group.  The company has used the net proceeds from the December 2016 sale of its Easy Spirit wholesale business to purchase the Kasper Group.  The terms of the Kasper Group transaction were not disclosed.  The acquisition of the Kasper Group is expected to close during January 2017.

For more than thirty years, the Kasper Group has been an expert in affordable, wear-to-work tailored clothing through the design, contract manufacture and sale of a broad range of suits, dresses and sportswear for women.  The Kasper Group’s apparel is sold under its flagship Kasper and other well-known brand names. The Kasper Group sells its products through wholesale distribution channels, including specialty and department stores and mass merchandisers.

“We are pleased to welcome the Kasper Group to Nine West Holdings. The Kasper Group is a well known leader in the women’s sportswear market,” said Ralph Schipani, interim CEO of Nine West Holdings. “The Kasper Group is a profitable wholesale business that we anticipate will make a positive impact on the Company’s financial performance.  This acquisition of Kasper’s reputable branded apparel will enable Nine West Holdings to offer its customers an array of women’s affordable, wear-to-work tailored clothing, footwear and accessories.”

“Pro-forma for the acquisition of the Kasper Group, the sale of the Easy Spirit non-retail business and our other rationalization initiatives, Nine West Holdings’ Adjusted EBITDA for the trailing twelve month period ended September 30, 2016 would have been approximately $90 million compared to reported trailing twelve month Adjusted EBITDA of approximately $46 million as of September 30, 2016,” said Mr. Schipani.  “After giving effect to these transactions, Nine West Holdings’ pro-forma liquidity as of September 30, 2016 would have been approximately $125 million, compared to reported liquidity as of September 30, 2016 of $94 million.  With the Easy Spirit transaction, the Company has sold an underperforming asset with negative EBITDA and reinvested the proceeds into a profitable Kasper business that we believe will bring immediate improvement to the Company’s cash flow and liquidity, resulting in a significant deleveraging of the Company.”

The Kasper Group was a part of the Jones Apparel group of companies purchased by Sycamore Partners in April 2014 as part of the take private acquisition of The Jones Group Inc.  Nine West Holdings and the Kasper Group currently are separate portfolio companies of Sycamore Partners.

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