Sears stumbles in Restoration Hardware bid

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In the middle of a well-publicized, but not necessarily well-received, bid to acquire Restoration Hardware last week, Sears Holdings Corp. said its third quarter net income plummeted to $2 million from $196 million last year.

The retailer's total domestic comparable store sales declined 4.6%, with both Kmart and Sears experiencing lower sales across most merchandise categories. The exception is home electronics sales at Sears. Revenues totaled $11.5 billion, a decline of $0.4 billion from last year.

Last week, Sears offered to acquire Restoration Hardware for $6.75 per share in cash. However, the two companies have failed to agree because of a confidentiality agreement that would prevent Sears from making a tender offer outside of the process.

On November 8, Restoration Hardware said that it had agreed to be acquired in a deal valued at $6.70 per share, or $267 million, involving management and private equity firm Catterton Partners, but the retailer is soliciting competing proposals until December 13. Some in the industry have questioned how mid-priced Sears would incorporate the upscale home furnishings brand.

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