The $21-a-share purchase easily gained the approval of Zale shareholders at a special meeting in Dallas, winning 62.2 percent of the votes cast and creating a $6.2 billion jewelry powerhouse with more than 3,600 locations in the U.S., Canada and the U.K.
In promotions tied to the acquisition, Mark Light, president and chief executive officer of Sterling Jewelers, adds the new post of president and chief operating officer of the company, and Theo Killion, ceo of Zale prior to the merger, becomes ceo of Zale, including the Zales, Gordon’s and Piercing Pagoda nameplates in the U.S. and the Peoples and Mappins jewelry chains in Canada.
As envisioned when the companies agreed to merge in February, Killion will report to Mike Barnes, ceo of Signet. Light continues to report to Barnes. Sterling Jewelers includes Signet’s U.S. nameplates Kay Jewelers and Jared The Galleria of Jewelry.
Sebastian Hobbs, managing director of the U.K. for Signet, reports to Light.
The Signet-Zale combination encountered resistance as Thursday’s voted neared. TIG Advisors, owners of 9.5 percent of Zale’s stock, considered the $21-a-share price insufficient in light of Zale’s financial projections, and was joined in that argument by Gabelli Funds LLC, owners of 7.5 percent of Zale’s stock. Institutional Shareholder Services and Egan-Jones Proxy Services recommended a vote for the merger while Glass Lewis opposed it.
However, Golden Gate Capital, Zale’s largest shareholder with 23.3 percent of the shares outstanding, supported the acquisition and was involved in the negotiations which led to an agreement in principal.
Of the 36.9 million votes cast in person or by proxy at the Zale meeting Thursday, 62.2 percent voted for the merger and 26.4 percent against it. Abstentions were recorded for 11.4 percent of the shares.
London’s newly opened @designmuseum will look back on the life and work of Azzedine Alaïa in a show that the designer helped to curate before he died of heart failure last month. The retrospective, which Alaïa had worked on with Mark Wilson, chief curator of the @groningermuseum, will look at the impact of his work worldwide. The show, “Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier,” will run from May 10 to October 7. Read more about the exhibit on WWD.com #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @zefashioninsider)
@Pharrell and his wife Helen Lasichanh were among the stars that came out to celebrate @rimowa’s first pop-up concept shop. The space, which is located on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, draws inspiration from airport luggage carousels and lounge areas – and features the company’s luggage and accessories. If the pop-up is successful it could pave the way for addition temporary shops throughout the world. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA)
@carineroitfeld celebrated @crfashionbook’s first calendar last night with a dinner party at Spring Place in Manhattan. Photographed by @stevenkleinstudio, the calendar takes on a fitness theme and features @joansmalls, @gigihadid, @danielle_herrington_ – pictured here – and more. “[Carine Roitfeld] wanted me to feel sexy and she wanted me to be myself and feel it out on my own and do what I felt was right,” said Herrington, aka Miss October. #wwdeye
@saintrecords and @virgilabloh last night at @americanexpress’ “A Night With Success Makers” event. “I always bring it back to community because without that I wouldn’t have the courage,” said Knowles when asked how she has gotten where she is now. Read more highlights from their conversation on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @lizdoupnik)
This Just In: Industry sources have told WWD that Anastasia Soare is rumored to be considering selling her beauty business, @anastasiabeverlyhills. According to those sources, Soare has tapped investment bank Imperial Capital to explore sale options for her eponymous beauty brand –– and with at least $340 million in net sales, this would be a big deal. Put in context of other recent transactions for makeup companies, Soare’s price tag could be in the billions if she were to sell the whole thing. #wwdnews #wwdbeauty (📷: @clint_spaulding)
@assouline’s latest book, “The Spirit of Bentley: Be Extraordinary” captures the adventurous attitudes and opulent lifestyles of @bentleymotors’ most creative owners and enthusiasts throughout the U.K. The 292-page hardcover has a section dedicated to showing its team of skilled artisans and photos of its most colorful owners, from George Bamford to designer @alicetemperley, pictured here by Aline Coquelle. #wwdeye
@google released its report on the most popular search terms this year. For fashion brands, the list was led by @gucci, the luxury brand that stunned the market last October when it pledged to stop using fur. Runner ups were @supremenewyork and @fashionnova, along with more established brands like @louisvuitton, @chanelofficial and @ysl. #wwdfashion (📷: @aitorrosasphoto)
In yet another fashion show shuffle, @elleryland is moving its show in sync with the Paris couture calendar — though the brand is still keeping one foot on the city’s ready-to-wear schedule. Their runway show in January will coincide with the launch of a new strategy: designing two main collections each year instead of four, which will then be released in four drops. “As we all know, the system needs to change. We need to show sooner to give time back to artisans and designers to do what they do best — create,” said founder Kym Ellery. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
@maxmara’s classic 101801 coat was the cornerstone of its pre-fall 2018 collection. The design team expanded the traditional double-breasted, kimono-sleeved style into a trapeze coat, lean belted styles and a peacoat and presented them in monochromatic looks – like the camel one pictured here. #wwdfashion #prefall18 (📷: George Chinsee)