Over the past decade, PVH Corp. has completed a series of acquisitions that has transformed the previously staid supplier of Van Heusen dress shirts and Izod sportswear into one of the largest and most dynamic apparel marketers on the global stage. It purchased Calvin Klein in 2003, the neckwear manufacturer Superba in 2006 and Tommy Hilfiger in 2010. Three months ago, PVH made waves again when it revealed its purchase of Warnaco Group Inc. for $2.9 billion.
The quartet of acquisitions over the past decade has swelled PVH’s top-line revenue from $1.55 billion in 2003 to about $6 billion in 2012, a 16 percent compound annual growth rate, or CAGR. Earnings per share in the 10-year period have grown from 98 cents to $6.38 (a 23 percent CAGR), while the stock price is up from about $12 a decade ago to $117.83 on Tuesday.
While PVH may have made its aggressive acquisition strategy look like a surefire winner in hindsight, Wall Street often took a pessimistic view on the deals — until PVH proved the naysayers wrong.
“M&A is very hard. There’s a reason that 60 to 70 percent of deals do not deliver what the expectations are. Acquisitions, even small acquisitions, create tremendous disruptions and uncertainty in the entire company,” said Emanuel Chirico, chairman and chief executive officer of PVH, in a presentation outlining the potential upsides and pitfalls of acquisitions. “If you don’t manage that uncertainty and if you don’t manage that disruption, you really have issues.”
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