Jos. A. Bank, Men’s Wearhouse Agree to Talks

by Harry Sheff

Jos A BankWhile Jos. A. Bank has rejected the latest in a long line of offers from rival Men’s Wearhouse, its chairman, Robert Wildrick, has finally agreed to talk.

Wildrick sent a letter to Men’s Wearhouse CEO Doug Ewert late yesterday spurning the $63.50 per share offer as “unsolicited” and “inadequate,” but added that “our board has authorized our meeting with you to establish a process that will enable you to advise our board as to the highest price you are prepared to pay in an acquisition of Jos. A. Bank.”

Jos. A. Bank continued to stand behind its Eddie Bauer acquisition—seen by Men’s Wearhouse and some observers as a defensive move—and the potential rewards it would have for its shareholders.

Wildrick listed five topics he and the Jos. A. Bank board wanted to address in meetings with Men’s Wearhouse, including limited due diligence information, terms, transaction structure and certainty (with regard to Federal Trade Commission approval) and the maximum potential offer.

Men’s Wearhouse CEO Doug Ewert replied with a letter of his own today welcoming the newly open lines of communication.

The $63.50 per share offer from Men’s Wearhouse is set to expire on Friday, March 12, 2014 at the close of the business day.