Newell Brands announced on Oct. 4 that is putting up for sale the winter sporting goods business that it inherited earlier this year from Jarden Corp. through the latter's merger with Newell Rubbermaid. The company subsequently stated, however, that it intends to keep K2 and Völkl Marker Dalbello if it doesn't find suitable buyers for them. The search for new investors has already started and is expected to be completed in the first half of 2017.
K2's inline skates and Zoot are understood to be part of the disposal package. Officials indicate that Newell plans to keep strong outdoor brands like Coleman and Marmot Mountain. Vista had already indicated that it had no intention to divest Coleman. With annual sales of around $200 million, Marmot is said to be relatively profitable and in good shape.
Meanwhile, Newell has announced the sale of three profitable brands of tools – Irwin, Lenox and Hilmor – to Stanley Black & Decker.
The sale has been negotiated for almost twice the price that analysts had expected, according to Bloomberg. It will generate proceeds of $1.95 billion, equal to about 13 times Ebitda and 2.6 times revenues for a trailing 12-month period.
In addition, Newell has said that it wants to dispose of its consumer storage container business and its heaters, humidifiers and fans. All in all, the operations for sale represent about 10 percent of the group's entire portfolio. They generated total sales of $1.5 billion in 2015.
More details will probably be given by Newell on Oct. 28 in connection with the release of its quarterly results. In particular, it's not clear yet whether the planned disposal include small winter sports brands like Madshus, Morrow, Ride Snowboards, Atlas or Tubbs. Jarden had already taken on impairment charges of $145.6 million on its winter sports operations at the end of last year.
Newell pointed out that its choices were not dictated by economic reasons but by a change of focus. Still, Newell's planned disposal of the winter sports business was largely expected because most winter sports brands have been suffering from unpredictable snow conditions lately. This has put a lot of pressure on margins at wholesale and retail, benefitting the most companies that could produce and deliver re-orders quickly.
The planned reorganization is meant to maximize growth opportunities, value creation and cost synergies, Newell said, with increased investments in the remaining businesses. Newell says it wants to transform itself from a holding company into an operating company. As part of this strategy, the existing 32 business units of the group will be consolidated into 16 operating divisions.
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