Richard Baker is a real estate expert who caught the retail bug, but it has been his dealmaking that has shaped Hudson’s Bay Co.
During his time leading first NRDC Equity Partners and then HBC, Baker has bought and sold steadily, building an empire with sales of over 14 billion Canadian dollars.
But with Gilt coming and going in just two years, the Lord & Taylor flagship destined for departure and the German operations said to be in play, it seems to be a time of refocusing.
Here, a look at Baker’s wheeling and dealing, drawn from WWD’s archives, company reports and S&P Capital IQ.
June: NRDC Equity Partners agrees to buy Lord & Taylor from Federated Department stores for $1.2 billion.
July: NRDC buys an 80 percent stake in Hudson’s Bay Co. from Maple Leaf Heritage Investments; Richard Baker named chief executive officer and governor.
HBC sells Designer Depo to Les Ailes de la Mode Incorporees.
January: HBC agrees to sell 220 of its Zellers stores to Target Corp. for 1.8 billion Canadian dollars (but the mass merchant abandoned its Canadian expedition in 2015).
March: HBC sells 10 doors from its closing Fields banner to The Bargain! Shop Holdings Inc.
November: HBC raises 365 million Canadian dollars as it begins trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
Total revenues: 4.1 billion Canadian dollars
July: HBC agrees to buy Saks Inc. in $2.9 billion deal, including debt.
Total revenues: 5.2 billion Canadian dollars
January: Ontrea Inc. agrees to buy Toronto flagship retail complex and the former Simpson Tower from HBC for 650 million Canadian dollars.
Total revenues: 8.2 billion Canadian dollars
February: HBC sets up real estate joint ventures with Simon Property Group in the U.S. and RioCan Real Estate Investment Trust in Canada.
April: HBC raises 363.5 million Canadian dollars in secondary offering.
June: HBC agrees to acquire Galeria Kaufhof from Metro for 2.8 billion euros, including debt.
November: HBC sells 25 percent stake in HBS Global Properties Joint Venture to Ivanhoé Cambridge Inc., Madison International Realty and a large U.S. pension for $533 million.
Total revenues: 11.2 billion Canadian dollars
January: HBC agrees to buy Gilt Groupe Inc. for $250 million.
March: HBC sells another 2 percent of properties joint venture to Madison International for $50 million and retains 61 percent of the venture after Simon Property Group also contributed a $100 million commitment for tenant improvements.
Total revenues: 14.5 billion Canadian dollars
October: HBC agrees to sell Lord & Taylor Fifth Avenue flagship to WeWork in $850 million deal.
December: HBC receives $500 million investment from Rhône Capital.
Total revenues: 14.3 billion Canadian dollars
June: HBC reaches deal to sell Gilt to Rue La La.
July: Rumors percolate that HBC is close to offloading at least a part of its German operations.