Express ends buyout talks with Sycamore

Express (NYSE:EXPR) has ended talks with Sycamore Partners over a possible acquisition of the specialty apparel retailer. After months of working together to try and reach an agreement, discussions ended due to the unavailability of financing on acceptable terms.

Due to termination, Sycamore Partners is under an agreement that it cannot disclose information or work with a third party to try and again acquire the retailer until June 15.

Sycamore is the largest shareholder of Express, with a 9.9 percent stake, reported Seeking Alpha.

Express currently operates more than 600 retail and factory outlet stores, primarily in shopping malls, lifestyle centers and street locations, in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. The company is franchised in the Middle East, Latin America and South Africa.

Last spring, Express announced it would close approximately 50 stores during the next 36 months after a challenging quarter that saw the apparel chain lose customers and miss sales. At the same time, the company announced it would expand its new outlet-store concept. Express debuted the outlet format in April and noted the stores are exceeding sales plans.

For more:
-See this Express press release
-See this Seeking Alpha article

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