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Hudson’s Bay Company entertains the idea of an IPO

Hudson’s Bay Company entertains the idea of an IPO
(Image: JamesZ_Flickr)

Rumours are swirling about an initial public offering for Canadian icon Hudson’s Bay Company. Women’s Wear Daily is reporting that HBC’s owners want to capitalize off The Bay’s recent rehabilitation—the department store has seen a marked improvement in finances since 2010 (it was reportedly running negative or break-even comp-store sales for 20 years prior to that), a Topshop expansion and reports of other retail partnerships in the works. Moreover, as Canada’s retail sector braces for Target’s impending arrival, the fact that HBC has operations both north (The Bay, Home Outfitters) and south (Lord and Taylor) of the border could be a draw to investors. In 2011, the company was exploring the possibility of listing publicly, but the idea was reportedly squashed due to market volatility. This time, Richard Baker, HBC’s governor and CEO, is remaining cagey. He told WWD, “There is nothing on the radar at the moment, but it could come at any time.”

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