NEW YORK — J. Crew Group Inc., which is battling shareholders unhappy with its $3 billion deal to be taken private, reiterated that it would stand by the now-disputed settlement the two parties reached last month and said it plans to file a motion to dismiss the case.
The retailer, in a letter Tuesday to Delaware Chancery Court Vice Chancellor Leo Strine Jr., said it had fulfilled its side of the bargain. “If plaintiffs continue to refuse to negotiate in good faith over the specific wording of a release, defendants will assert counterclaims and third-party claims for breach of contract against plaintiffs and the class, among others,” the document said.
The letter was sent by Gregory Williams, an attorney at Richards, Layton & Finger.
In November, J. Crew inked a deal to be acquired by TPG Capital and Leonard Green & Partners, which allowed the company to consider other offers through Jan. 15. But shareholders sued and at the last minute hammered out a settlement to extend the company’s “go-shop” period, giving rival bidders another month to make a better offer. The deal envisioned a $10 million payment to plaintiffs.
Shareholders on Monday said they were no longer supporting the settlement because the company revealed the results of the initial go-shop period, which produced no other bids, and because it set a date of March 1 for shareholders to vote on the deal.
“Defendants’ actions also turned the extended go-shop period into a charade, since the special committee [of J. Crew’s board] sent the signal to the world that they are investing all resources in closing the deal with TPG as soon as possible, and that nobody else should bother to bid for J. Crew,” said Stuart Grant, an attorney representing shareholders, in his letter to the judge Monday.
The shareholders “intend to focus all efforts toward obtaining a very significant monetary recovery after a trial in this matter,” Grant said.
J. Crew fired back in its letter: “Having largely reaped the fruits of their bargain, plaintiffs now want to renege.”
Shares of J. Crew added 4 cents, or 0.1 percent, Wednesday to close at $43.47 as the S&P Retail Index lost 6.37 points, or 1.3 percent, to close at 495.59. Although the retail index surrendered the 500 mark achieved on Tuesday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average remained above 12,000 from the opening bell to the closing, ending the trading day at 12,041.97, a less than 0.1 percent advance. AnnTaylor Stores Corp. shares were off 74 cents, or 3.3 percent, to $21.80 after the company lifted fourth-quarter sales and earnings guidance but indicated gross margins at its Loft division hurt results.
@kering_official is spinning off its stake in puma in an effort to focus on its luxury brands, the brand operator announced yesterday. “We are proud to have supported the turnaround of Puma, which now has unrivaled capabilities to take full advantage of the specific dynamics of its global markets and is poised to achieve substantial growth,” said François-Henri Pinault, Kering’s chief executive officer and chairman. Artémis will become a “long-term strategic shareholder” of Puma with a 29 percent stake. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
The fashion world mourns for celebrated street style photographer, Nabile Quenum, who died at age 32 in Paris.
Quenum, creator of the fashion blog “J’ai Perdu Ma Veste,” was a fashion week fixture, and regularly shot for New York magazine’s The Cut, among other outlets, and brands such as Louis Vuitton, Moncler and Adidas. He was also actively involved in the #NoFreePhotos initiative, which kicked off in the fall. Read more about Quenum in @kbsmoke's story on WWD.com. #wwdnews
@verwanggang and @maisonladuree have teamed up on a dessert collab called Vera Wang Pour Ladurée. The collection, which launched this week, features a specialty macaroon, as well as a wedding cake inspired by one of the designer’s gowns. “I could not imagine a more delicate or sophisticated creation to grace any couple’s celebration,” said Wang. #wwdfashion
“I’m Russian and I love to use all these little tricks that I got from my grandma or my mom. We didn’t have a lot of money for creams or anything like that so we would use a garden as a beauty treatment regime. We’d put cucumber in the fridge and do a cucumber mask,” says model @irinashayk on one of her beauty hacks. WWD asked celebs what their go-to self-care rituals are. See what Naomie Harris, Freida Pinto and more said on WWD.com. #wwdeye #wwdbeauty (📷: @zefashioninsider)
Exclusive: @viktorandrolf are teaming up with @Zalando on a collection made from leftover clothing. The lineup, which lands at the retailer February 1, includes 17 pieces adorned with sliced up and repurposed overstock from the retailer’s private label collection. Pictured here is a look from the collection –– see more on WWD.com. #wwdfashion #wwdnews
@duewestnyc is the newest bar joining the collection of intimate neighborhood-focused spaces in the West Village. The cocktail menu, which includes bitters and syrups made in-house, offers a “Build Your Own Old-Fashioned” – like the one pictured here – where guests can choose from a list of spirits and unexpected sugars and bitters. #wwdeye
Spotted at last night’s National Board of Review gala in NYC: Angelina Jolie. Jolie – along with Meryl Streep, @lupitanyongo and more – continued the all-black dress code from Sunday’s Golden Globes. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)