Sycamore Partners welcomes John A. Lederer as a Senior Advisor

New York, NY, 2017-Sep-28 — /EPR Retail News/ — Sycamore Partners today announced that John A. Lederer, former President and Chief Executive Officer of US Foods, has joined the firm as a Senior Advisor. In this capacity, he will serve as the Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors of Staples, Inc. and its newly formed and independent United States and Canadian Retail Businesses.

“We are thrilled to have John join the Sycamore Partners team at this exciting time in the firm’s continued growth and development,” said Stefan Kaluzny, Managing Director of Sycamore Partners. “John has significant institutional knowledge of both distribution and retail businesses across the United States and Canada, which is particularly relevant given our recent acquisition of Staples. I am confident that John’s leadership experience and business acumen will be tremendously beneficial to create value and deliver exceptional products, services and expertise that enable businesses to work better.”

Mr. Lederer said, “I am honored to join Sycamore Partners as a Senior Advisor and Executive Chairman at Staples. Sycamore Partners has an outstanding reputation for driving profitable growth across its leading retail and consumer brands. I look forward to working closely with my new colleagues as we focus on building on the great legacy that has been created at Staples.”

As previously announced, Sycamore Partners completed its acquisition of Staples, Inc. on September 12, 2017.

About John A. Lederer
Mr. Lederer was most recently associated with Oak Hill Capital, advising it on acquisitions in the retail and consumer goods sectors, and serving on the board of several of its portfolio companies. From 2010 to 2015, Mr. Lederer served as the Chief Executive Officer of US Foods, one of the largest food service distributors in the United States, where he led a comprehensive rebranding of the company.

From 2008 to 2010, he was Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Duane Reade, where he led a major transformation of the Duane Reade pharmacy chain in just two years, culminating in its sale to Walgreens. Prior to Duane Reade, Mr. Lederer spent 30 years at Loblaw Companies Limited, Canada’s largest retail food distributor, where he served in a variety of senior leadership positions including President from 2000 to 2006. Mr. Lederer serves on the Board of Directors of US Foods, Maple Leaf Foods and Walgreens Boots Alliance. Mr. Lederer holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from York University.

About Sycamore Partners
Sycamore Partners is a private equity firm based in New York specializing in consumer and retail investments. The firm has more than $3.5 billion in capital under management. The firm’s strategy is to partner with management teams to improve the operating profitability and strategic value of their businesses. The firm’s investment portfolio currently includes Belk, Coldwater Creek, EMP Merchandising, Hot Topic, MGF Sourcing, NBG Home, Nine West Holdings, Staples, Inc., Staples’ United States Retail Business, Staples’ Canadian Retail Business, Talbots, The Limited and Torrid.

About Staples, Inc.
Staples brings technology and people together in innovative ways to consistently deliver products, services and expertise that elevate and delight customers. Staples is in business with businesses and is passionate about helping businesses work better. Headquartered outside of Boston, MA, Staples, Inc. operates primarily in North America. More information about Staples is available at www.staples.com.

Contact for Sycamore Partners:
Michael Freitag or Arielle Rothstein
Joele Frank, Wilkinson Brimmer Katcher
(212) 355-4449

SOURCE: Sycamore Partners

Sycamore Partners to acquire Staples, Inc. for an equity value of approximately $6.9 billion

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. & NEW YORK, 2017-Jul-04 — /EPR Retail News/ — Staples, Inc. (NASDAQ: SPLS or the “Company”) and Sycamore Partners, a leading private equity firm, today (June 29, 2017) announced that they have entered into a merger agreement in which investment funds managed by Sycamore Partners will acquire the Company in a transaction that values Staples at an equity value of approximately $6.9 billion. Under the terms of the merger agreement, all Staples’ stockholders will receive $10.25 per share in cash for each share of common stock they own, which represents a premium of approximately 20 percent to the 10-day volume weighted average stock price for Staples shares for the period ended April 3, 2017, the last trading day prior to widespread media speculation about a potential transaction.

Staples’ Board of Directors has unanimously approved the merger agreement and recommends that all Staples stockholders vote in favor of the transaction.

Robert Sulentic, Chairman of the Board, said, “Today’s announcement is the result of a comprehensive process in which our Board, with the assistance of a transaction committee comprised of independent directors, and outside financial advisors, explored and considered various alternatives to enhance value for our stockholders. Staples’ Board believes that this process has led to a transaction which is in the best interests of our stockholders, as well as Staples and its employees.”

The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including the receipt of regulatory and stockholder approval, and is expected to close no later than December, 2017. The closing is not subject to a financing condition.

“With an iconic brand, a winning strategy, and dedicated and passionate associates who are deeply focused on the customer, Staples is truly an outstanding enterprise,” said Stefan Kaluzny, Managing Director of Sycamore Partners. “We have tremendous confidence in CEO Shira Goodman and great

respect for the Staples management team and are excited about this opportunity to partner with them to accelerate long-term profitability.”

“The Sycamore Partners’ team shares Staples’ entrepreneurial spirit and long-term vision,” said Shira Goodman, Chief Executive Officer and President, Staples, Inc. “This transaction will enable us to drive greater value for our customers and immense opportunity for our business.”

Barclays and Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC are acting as financial advisors and Wilmer Hale LLP is acting as legal advisor to Staples.

UBS Investment Bank, BofA Merrill Lynch, Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse, Royal Bank of Canada, Jefferies, Wells Fargo Bank, National Association and Fifth Third Bank are providing debt financing for the transaction. BofA Merrill Lynch and Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. are acting as financial advisors and Kirkland & Ellis LLP is acting as legal advisor to Sycamore Partners.

About Staples, Inc.

Staples brings technology and people together in innovative ways to consistently deliver products, services and expertise that elevate and delight customers. Staples is in business with businesses and is passionate about empowering people to become true professionals at work. Headquartered outside of Boston, Mass., Staples, Inc. operates primarily in North America. More information about Staples (NASDAQ: SPLS) is available at www.staples.com.

About Sycamore Partners

Sycamore Partners is a private equity firm based in New York specializing in consumer and retail investments. The firm has more than $3.5 billion in capital under management. The firm’s strategy is to partner with management teams to improve the operating profitability and strategic value of their businesses. The firm’s investment portfolio currently includes Belk, Coldwater Creek, EMP Merchandising, Hot Topic, MGF Sourcing, NBG Home, Nine West Holdings, Talbots, The Limited and Torrid.

IMPORTANT ADDITIONAL INFORMATION WILL BE FILED WITH THE SEC

This filing may be deemed solicitation material in respect of the proposed acquisition of the Company by Sycamore Partners. The Company plans to file with the SEC and mail to its stockholders a Proxy Statement in connection with the transaction. This filing does not constitute a solicitation of any vote or approval. The Proxy Statement will contain important information about Sycamore Partners, the Company, the merger and related matters. Investors and security holders are urged to read the Proxy Statement carefully when it is available. Investors and security holders will be able to obtain free copies of the Proxy Statement and other documents filed with the SEC by Sycamore Partners and the Company through the web site maintained by the SEC at www.sec.gov. In addition, investors and security holders will be able to obtain free copies of the Proxy Statement from the Company by contacting Staples Investor Relations department at investor@staples.com. In addition, the proxy statement and our annual reports on Form 10-K, quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, current reports on Form 8-K and amendments to those reports filed or furnished pursuant to section 13(a) or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 are available free of charge through our website at investor.staples.com as soon as reasonably practicable after they are electronically filed with, or furnished to, the SEC.

The Company, and its directors and executive officers may be deemed to be participants in the solicitation of proxies from the Company’s stockholders with respect to the transactions contemplated by the merger agreement. Information regarding the Company’s directors and executive officers, including their ownership of the Company’s securities, is contained in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended January 28, 2017 and its proxy statement dated April 20, 2017, which are filed with the SEC. Investors and security holders may obtain additional information regarding the direct and indirect

interests of the Company and its directors and executive officers in the proposed transaction by reading the proxy statement and other public filings referred to above.

SAFE HARBOR FOR FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

Statements in this press release regarding the proposed transaction between Sycamore Partners and the Company, the expected timetable for completing the transaction, future financial and operating results, future opportunities for the combined company and any other statements about Sycamore Partners and the Company managements’ future expectations, beliefs, goals, plans or prospects constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Any statements that are not statements of historical fact (including statements containing the words “believes,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “expects,” estimates and similar expressions) should also be considered to be forward looking statements, although not all forward-looking statements contain these identifying words. Readers should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. The Company’s actual results may differ materially from such forward-looking statements as a result of numerous factors, some of which the Company may not be able to predict and may not be within the Company’s control. Factors that could cause such differences include, but are not limited to, (i) the risk that the proposed merger may not be completed in a timely manner, or at all, which may adversely affect the Company’s business and the price of its common stock, (ii) the failure to satisfy all of the closing conditions of the proposed merger, including the adoption of the merger agreement by the Company’s stockholders and the receipt of certain governmental and regulatory approvals in the U.S. and in foreign jurisdictions, (iii) the occurrence of any event, change or other circumstance that could give rise to the termination of the merger agreement, (iv) the effect of the announcement or pendency of the proposed merger on the Company’s business, operating results, and relationships with customers, suppliers, competitors and others, (v) risks that the proposed merger may disrupt the Company’s current plans and business operations, (vi) potential difficulties retaining employees as a result of the proposed merger, (vii) risks related to the diverting of management’s attention from the Company’s ongoing business operations, and (viii) the outcome of any legal proceedings that may be instituted against the Company related to the merger agreement or the proposed merger. There are a number of important, additional factors that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from those indicated by such forward looking statements, including the factors described in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended January 28, 2017 and its most recent quarterly report filed with the SEC. The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to update any forward-looking statements as a result of developments occurring after the date of this press release.

Contact:
Staples, Inc.
Media Contacts:
Mark Cautela
508-253-3832
mark.cautela@staples.com

Investor Contact:
Chris Powers
508-253-4632
christopher.powers@staples.com

Joele Frank for Sycamore Partners
Michael Freitag or Arielle Rothstein
212-355-4449
media@sycamorepartners.com

Source: Sycamore Partners

Sycamore Partners Director Stefan Kaluzny: We are excited to have completed this acquisition and to begin our partnership with Belk

NEW YORK and CHARLOTTE, N.C., 2015-12-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Sycamore Partners today announced that it has completed its acquisition of Belk, Inc. (“Belk” or the “Company”).

Stefan Kaluzny, Managing Director of Sycamore Partners, said, “We are excited to have completed this acquisition and to begin our partnership with Belk. The Company has developed a loyal base of customers over its 127-year history, and we believe Belk is positioned for continued growth and success. We look forward to working with Belk’s management team and associates as they build on the Company’s legacy and continue to serve its customers and deliver Modern. Southern. Style.”

Tim Belk, chief executive officer of Belk, Inc., said, “We are very pleased to complete this transaction with Sycamore Partners, which delivers meaningful value to all our stakeholders. Our partnership with Sycamore will contribute to Belk’s continued success, and we look forward to leveraging Sycamore’s deep knowledge of the retail market to best serve our dedicated customers and provide even greater opportunities for our valued team members.”

As previously announced, under the terms of the transaction, Tim Belk is continuing to serve as CEO of Belk, and the Company continues to be headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Goldman, Sachs & Co. acted as financial advisor and King & Spalding LLP acted as legal advisor to Belk. BofA Merrill Lynch acted as financial advisor and Kirkland & Ellis LLP acted as legal advisor to Sycamore Partners.

About Belk, Inc.
Charlotte, NC-based Belk, Inc. (www.belk.com) is the nation’s largest family owned and operated department store company with 296 Belk stores located in 16 Southern states and a growing digital presence. Its belk.com website offers a wide assortment of national brands and private label fashion apparel, shoes and accessories for the entire family along with top name cosmetics, a wedding registry and a large selection of quality merchandise for the home. Founded in 1888 by William Henry Belk in Monroe, NC, the company is in the third generation of Belk family leadership and has been committed to community involvement since its inception. In the fiscal year ended January 31, 2015, the Company and its associates, customers and vendors donated more than $21.5 million to communities within Belk market areas.

Belk offers many ways to connect via digital and social media, including Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Google Plus, and provides exclusive offers, fashion updates, sales notifications and coupons via email or mobile phone text messages. Customers can also download the latest Belk mobile apps for the iPad, iPhone or Android.

About Sycamore Partners
Sycamore Partners is a private equity firm based in New York specializing in consumer and retail investments. The firm has more than $3.5 billion in capital under management. The firm’s strategy is to partner with management teams to improve the operating profitability and strategic value of their businesses. The firm’s investment portfolio currently includes Aeropostale, Coldwater Creek, Dollar Express, EMP Merchandising, Hot Topic, the Kasper Group, Kurt Geiger, MGF Sourcing, Nine West Holdings, Talbots and Torrid.

SOURCE Belk, Inc.

For further information: For Belk: Ralph Pitts, Belk, Inc., 704-426-8402; For Sycamore Partners: Michael Freitag or Arielle Rothstein, Joele Frank, Wilkinson Brimmer Katcher, 212-355-4449

Funds managed by Sycamore Partners to acquire 100% of Belk, Inc. for approximately $3.0 billion

  • Belk Stockholders to Receive $68.00 per share in cash
  • Tim Belk to remain CEO
  • Company headquarters to stay in Charlotte, N.C.

CHARLOTTE, N.C., 2015-8-24— /EPR Retail News/ — Belk, Inc., the nation’s largest family owned and operated fashion department store company, today announced that it has entered into a definitive merger agreement whereby investment funds managed byNew York-based private equity firm Sycamore Partners will acquire 100% of Belk in a transaction with an estimated enterprise value at closing of approximately $3.0 billion. Under the terms of the merger agreement, all Belk stockholders will receive $68.00per share in cash for each share of Belk common stock they own.

Tim Belk, chairman and chief executive officer of Belk, Inc., said, “We are delighted to have found a financial partner that sees what we see in Belk: a 127-year-old brand that remains relevant today with exceptional customer loyalty in small, medium and large cities throughout the South. We plan to grow Belk by executing our current strategic initiatives and undertaking new growth initiatives together with Sycamore. This transaction is an across-the-board win for our stakeholders.”

Stefan Kaluzny, Managing Director of Sycamore Partners, said, “We have great respect for Belk’s management team and associates, its deeply rooted brand, its footprint of stores and its growing online presence. Belk is exactly the kind of investment we look for: an outstanding brand with a proven success formula and the potential for further growth.”

Under the terms of the transaction, Tim Belk will remain CEO of Belk and the company will continue to be headquartered in Charlotte.

The merger agreement was unanimously approved by Belk’s board of directors. The merger is subject to certain customary conditions, including the receipt of regulatory and stockholder approval, and is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of calendar 2015.

Certain Belk stockholders have agreed to vote shares owned or controlled by them representing, in the aggregate, a majority of the voting power of Belk’s shares, in favor of the transaction.

Goldman, Sachs & Co. is acting as financial advisor and King & Spalding LLP is acting as legal advisor to Belk. BofA Merrill Lynch is acting as financial advisor and Kirkland & Ellis LLP is acting as legal advisor to Sycamore Partners.

Important Additional Information Regarding the Merger Will Be Filed With The SEC

In connection with the proposed merger, Belk, Inc. will file with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) and furnish to its stockholders a proxy statement and other relevant documents. BEFORE MAKING ANY VOTING DECISION, BELK, INC.’S STOCKHOLDERS ARE URGED TO READ THE DEFINITIVE PROXY STATEMENT IN ITS ENTIRETY WHEN IT BECOMES AVAILABLE AND ANY OTHER DOCUMENTS TO BE FILED WITH THE SEC IN CONNECTION WITH THE PROPOSED MERGER OR INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE IN THE PROXY STATEMENT BECAUSE THEY WILL CONTAIN IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THE PROPOSED MERGER.

Investors will be able to obtain a free copy of the proxy statement, when available, and other relevant documents filed by Belk, Inc. with the SEC at the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov.  In addition, investors may obtain a free copy of the proxy statement, when available, and other relevant documents from Belk, Inc.’s website at www.belk.com or by directing a request to: Belk, Inc., 2801 West Tyvola Road, Charlotte, NC 28217, ATTN: Investor Relations 704-357-1000.

Participation in the Solicitation

Belk, Inc. and its directors, executive officers and certain other members of management and employees of Belk, Inc. may be deemed to be “participants” in the solicitation of proxies from the stockholders of Belk, Inc. in connection with the proposed merger.  Information regarding the interests of the persons who may, under the rules of the SEC, be considered participants in the solicitation of the stockholders of Belk, Inc. in connection with the proposed merger, which may be different than those of Belk, Inc.’s stockholders generally, will be set forth in the proxy statement and the other relevant documents to be filed with the SEC.  Stockholders can find information about Belk, Inc. and its directors and executive officers and their ownership of Belk, Inc.’s common stock in Belk, Inc.’s annual report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended January 31, 2015, which was filed with the SEC on April 14, 2015, and in its definitive proxy statement for its most recent annual meeting of stockholders, which was filed with the SEC on April 23, 2015, and in Forms 4 of directors and executive officers filed with the SEC.  Additional information regarding the interests of such individuals in the proposed merger will be included in the proxy statement relating to the merger when it is filed with the SEC.  These documents may be obtained free of charge from the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov and Belk, Inc.’s website at www.belk.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

Certain statements made in this press release, and other written or oral statements made by or on behalf of the Company, may constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the federal securities laws. Statements regarding future events and developments and our future performance, as well as our expectations, beliefs, plans, estimates or projections relating to the future, are forward-looking statements within the meaning of these laws. You can identify these forward-looking statements through our use of words such as “may,” “will,” “intend,” “project,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “continue” or other similar words.  Examples of forward-looking statements in this news release include, but are not limited to, statements about the price, terms and closing date of the proposed transaction, and statements regarding stockholder and regulatory approvals and the satisfaction of various other conditions to the closing merger contemplated by the merger agreement. Forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, expectations, or outcomes to differ materially from our historical experience as well as management’s present expectations or projections. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: (i) the occurrence of any event, change or other circumstances that could give rise to the termination of the merger agreement; (ii) the inability to complete the proposed merger due to the failure to obtain Belk, Inc. stockholder approval for the proposed merger or the failure to satisfy other conditions of the proposed merger within the proposed timeframe or at all; (iii) the failure to obtain the necessary financing arrangements as set forth in the debt and equity commitment letters delivered pursuant to the merger agreement, or the failure of the proposed merger to close for any other reason; (iv) risks related to disruption of management’s attention from Belk, Inc.’s ongoing business operations due to the transaction; (v) the outcome of any legal proceedings, regulatory proceedings or enforcement matters that may be instituted against Belk, Inc. and others relating to the merger agreement; (vi) the risk that the pendency of the proposed merger disrupts current plans and operations and the potential difficulties in employee retention as a result of the pendency of the proposed merger; (vii) the effect of the announcement of the proposed merger on Belk, Inc.’s relationships with its customers, operating results and business generally; and (viii) the amount of the costs, fees, expenses and charges related to the proposed merger. Consider these factors carefully in evaluating the forward-looking statements. Additional factors that may cause results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements are set forth in Belk, Inc.’s Annual Report on Form 10—K for the fiscal year ended January 31, 2015, which was filed with the SEC on April 14, 2015, under the heading “Item 1A. Risk Factors,” and in its subsequently filed reports with the SEC, including Forms 10-Q and 8-K.  Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on the forward-looking statements included in this news release, which speak only as of the date hereof. Belk, Inc. does not undertake to update any of these statements in light of new information or future events.

About Belk, Inc.
Charlotte, N.C.-based Belk, Inc. (www.belk.com) is the nation’s largest family owned and operated department store company with close to 300 Belk stores located in 16 Southern states and a growing digital presence. Its belk.com website offers a wide assortment of national brands and private label fashion apparel, shoes and accessories for the entire family along with top name cosmetics, a wedding registry and a large selection of quality merchandise for the home. Founded in 1888 by William Henry Belk in Monroe, N.C., the company is in the third generation of Belk family leadership and has been committed to community involvement since its inception. In the fiscal year ended January 31, 2015, the company and its associates, customers and vendors donated more than $21.5 million to communities within Belk market areas.

Belk offers many ways to connect via digital and social media, including Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, YouTube, Google Plus and Belk Blog, and provides exclusive offers, fashion updates, sales notifications and coupons via email or mobile phone text messages. Customers can also download the latest Belk mobile apps for the iPad, iPhone or Android.

About Sycamore Partners
Sycamore Partners is a private equity firm based in New York specializing in consumer and retail investments. The firm has more than $3.5 billion in capital under management. The firm’s strategy is to partner with management teams to improve the operating profitability and strategic value of their businesses. The firm’s investment portfolio currently includes Aeropostale, Coldwater Creek, EMP Merchandising, Hot Topic, the Kasper Group, Kurt Geiger, MGF Sourcing, Nine West Holdings, Pathlight Capital, Talbots and Torrid.

SOURCE Belk, Inc.

For further information: Jessica Graham, Belk, Inc., 704-426-8333, jessica_graham@belk.com

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Funds managed by Sycamore Partners to acquire 100% of Belk, Inc. for approximately $3.0 billion

Funds managed by Sycamore Partners to acquire 100% of Belk, Inc. for approximately $3.0 billion