MOVING ON?: Hope springs eternal in Seattle.
A special committee of Nordstrom Inc.’s board might have shot down the Nordstrom family’s offer to take the company private, but the descendants of John W. Nordstrom aren’t fully ready to walk away. But they also don’t seem to be actively pursing a deal right now.
Two weeks ago, the Nordstroms offered to buy the company for $50 a share, or $8.4 billion, an offer the special committee rejected. According to a regulatory filing late Thursday, the family worked to submit “improved terms…in order to move forward with a transaction” but the effort ultimately fell short.
The Nordstroms said a buyout, by them, would be “an attractive outcome” all around. They again asserted that they have “no interest in any alternative sale” and then left open a bit of wiggle room for the future.
“The group reserves the right to not submit any proposal or to modify the terms of any indication of interest for a going private transaction, in the latter case consistent with its obligations under the letter agreement with the issuer,” according to the filing.
A source familiar with the deal said: “For all intents and purposes, the board’s decision is saying, ‘OK, we’re moving on.’ The [family] group’s just leaving the door open because, who knows what may or may not happen down the road? The group wasn’t ready to stop, but the board was like, ‘We’re calling it a day.’”