Newell Brands has found a buyer for Pure Fishing, a constellation of fishing tackle brands that includes the likes of Abu Garcia, Berkley, Shakespeare and others, and Jostens. They were part of the former Jarden Corporation, which Newell bought in the spring of 2016.
Other important assets like K2, Völkl and Rawlings have also been divested, leaving Newell with only a few other important properties such as Coleman, Marmot and Ex Officio, which together have annual sales of around $1.6 billion.
Pure Fishing and Jostens have been sold for $1.3 billion each. The multiples are high as Pure Fishing generated sales of $556 million in 2017, and Jostens $768 million. The buyer of Pure Fishing is Sycamore Partners, a former bidder for sports companies like Billabong and the Performance Sports Group, owner of Bauer and other brands, which both went to other bidders.
Newell paid $15.4 billion for Jarden, and Newell wanted to raise $10 billion by selling some of its assets, but it has so far netted proceeds of around $5.5 billion. It's a possible explanation for a big slide in its stock market value since Jarden's acquisition.
The group recorded a non-cash impairment charge of $8.1 billion for its continuing operations in the third quarter, saying that they primarily concerned intangible assets in certain businesses it had acquired. This led Newell to report an operating loss of $7.9 billion for the quarter, compared with operating income of $141 million in the previous year, and a net loss of $7.1 billion as compared to net earnings of $234 million. Net losses from continuing operations reached $6.8 billion, compared with a profit of $111 million.
Newell has indicated that it wants to keep Coleman, although the brand has not performed well lately. Coleman's loss of a contract with a major U.S. retailer led to a drop in the group's Home & Outdoor Living segment during the third quarter to $727 million, down from $780 million in the year-ago period. Part of the decline was also attributed to unfavorable foreign exchange rates and a revision of accounting standards. The asset impairment charge led to an operating loss of $4.3 billion in the segment, compared with an operating profit of $95.5 million in the same quarter a year ago. On a normalized basis, the operating margin declined to 11.4 percent from 14.2 percent.
The group reported a 7.7 percent drop in total net revenues from continuing operations to $2.8 billion for the quarter. Core revenues from continuing operations fell by 4.0 percent. On a “normalized” basis, the gross margin declined by 0.1 percentage points to 35.7 percent and the operating margin rose by 0.1 percentage points to 13.0 percent.