Jos. A Bank in talks with Eddie Bauer -source

CHICAGO Sat Feb 1, 2014 6:27pm EST

CHICAGO Feb 1 (Reuters) - Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc is in talks to buy retailer Eddie Bauer Inc from private equity owner Golden Gate Capital, according to a source familiar with the talks.

The source, who asked not to be named, did not reveal details about the talks.

Jos. A. Bank has been involved in a prolonged and nasty struggle with rival retailer Men's Wearhouse Inc, with each making overtures to buy the other. The Wall Street Journal reported the talks between Jos. A. Bank and Eddie Bauer earlier on Saturday.

Last week, Men's Wearhouse Inc said it was open to sweetening its spurned buyout offer for Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc - under certain conditions. Men's Wearhouse called on independent directors of the smaller men's clothing chain to reconsider its bid.

Men's Wearhouse took a revised offer to Jos. A. Bank shareholders in early January. In December, its rival rejected an offer of $55 per share.

Jos. A. Bank has urged shareholders to reject the hostile bid, calling it inadequate and opportunistic.

Jos. A. Bank offered to acquire Men's Wearhouse in October, a deal backed by Golden Gate.

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