Nike Tightens Brand Image with Sale of Cole Haan

Athletic footwear maker Nike Inc. (NYSE: NKE) today announced that it is selling its Cole Haan brand to private equity firm Apax Partners for $570 million. The company expects the transaction to be completed early in 2013.

Nike's CEO said:

The decision to divest of Cole Haan allows us to sharpen our focus on opportunities with the highest potential for strong returns, and to make sure the brands within the NIKE, Inc. portfolio are the most complementary to the NIKE Brand.

This is the company's second major divestiture in the last month. In late October Nike sold its Umbro brand to Iconix Brand Group for $225 million.

Nike is streamlining its brands in an effort to concentrate its marketing dollars on the brands that produce the highest returns. The stock has performed poorly for the past 12 months, down more than 1% and basically stagnant over the past two years.

The company also announced a two-for-one stock split yesterday and raised its dividend by 17% as it tries to keep investors on board.

Shares are trading up about 1.6% today, at $92.39 in a 52-week range of $85.10 to $114.81.

Paul Ausick


Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Apparel, Consumer Goods, Mergers and Buy Outs Tagged: NKE

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