Newell Brands stated that they have closed their deal of Kirsch and Levolor window coverings brands to Hunter Douglas, worldwide leader in window coverings early in July. The gross proceedings from the investments ranged to about 270$ million which included the retention of all accounts receivable. The company added that net proceeds of this sale can be used for debt repayment, in line with priority of capital allocation and commitment of achieving a target leverage of 3.0-3.5 times within the next 2 to 3 years. Effective July 1, 2016 Rubbermaid is now to be sold under the Hunter Douglas brand.
The acquisition is meant to bring together, two distinctly different yet complementary brands. Hunter Douglas is a leader for premium custom window coverings, distributed predominantly through all specialty dealer channels. Levolor is a leader in everyday style market segment that is distributed mainly through home center channels.
Michael Polk, CEO of Rubbermaid stated, “This transaction strengthens our portfolio as we become even more focused on our highest-potential growth opportunities. I am pleased that our dedicated window coverings employees will be joining the Hunter Douglas organization. This category is a core business to Hunter Douglas and they will clearly commit to the strategic development of the brands and the category.”
Newell Brands, as on today’s date, hold a market value of $24 billion. The stocks of the brand rose by 0.43% and closed at 48.78$ per share. This stocks yearly, monthly and year-to-date price movement was 4.9%, 1.6% and 11.7%, respectively, on the same day.
According to Ron Kass, President and CEO of Hunter Douglas, North America, “Levolor is an exciting addition to the Hunter Douglas portfolio and allows us to supplement our longstanding position in the specialty dealer channel with a strengthened position in the home center channel. Together these businesses will allow us to better service the unique needs of each of these distribution channels and consumer market segments.”
In 1914 Levolor was founded in Hoboken, New Jersey, by H.K. Lorentzen. In 1982, Levolor opened a manufacturing plant in Ogden which, at that time, was at its peak and employed more than 600 people. Levolor situated in Ogden manufactures honeycomb or Accordia fabrics that are used in modern window shades. For the past 34 years, Levolor has worked as a key manufacturer with its building being a landmark for Ogden.
Hunter Douglas was founded in 1919 by Henry Sonnenberg and now happens to be the market leader in window coverings along with being a major manufacturer of architectural products. It has a major presence in Utah with a manufacturing facility to the west of Salt Lake International Airport. They also hold a subsidiary at 3 Form Global in Salt Lake City.