Hudson's Bay bidding for Kohl's - source

The Kohl’s label is seen on a shopping cart in a Kohl’s department store in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., January 25, 2022. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

March 16 (Reuters) - Canadian department store chain Hudson's Bay Co is bidding for American peer Kohl's Corp (KSS.N), a source familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Shares of the U.S. retailer, which is facing pressure from activist investors to sell itself, rose as much as 17% to $62.98, valuing the company at about $8.76 billion.

The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday reported, citing people familiar with the matter, that private equity firm Sycamore Partners and Hudson's Bay were planning bids in the high $60s per share.

Kohl's has asked suitors to submit offers by Wednesday, the report said. It added that the company has indicated it believed it was worth over $70 per share, citing one of the people.

Sycamore Partners declined to comment.

Kohl's had previously rejected two buyout offers, valuing it at between $64 and $65 per share, from Sycamore and Starboard Value-backed Acacia Research. But Kohl's said this month that investment bank Goldman Sachs (GS.N) spent January, February and March talking to more than 20 parties, adding it had provided a few of them access to more financial data. read more

Axios was the first to report that Hudson's Bay was considering a bid for Kohl's.

"The board will measure potential bids against a compelling standalone plan," Kohl's said in an emailed response on Wednesday, adding the engagement with potential bidders was "robust and ongoing".

Saks Fifth Avenue-parent Hudson's Bay Co is owned by HBC.

Reporting by Ananya Mariam Rajesh and Praveen Paramasivam in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva and Sriraj Kalluvila

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