Authentic Brands Group Bids On Barneys

On the latest episode of the E-Commerce Retail Briefing podcast:

The future of Barneys still remains unclear, but a bid from Authentic Brands Group could see the luxury retailer end up in Saks Fifth Avenue stores. The plan would entail licensing the brand to Saks Fifth Avenue. Saks would install Barneys departments in some of its stores, as well as run its website.

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Barneys Could Find A Home In Saks Fifth Avenue

Authentic Brands Group, the licensing company that owns Aeropostale and Juicy Couture, has put in a $271 million bid to buy Barneys out of bankruptcy, according to court filings. The plan would entail licensing the brand to Saks Fifth Avenue. Saks would install Barneys departments in some of its stores, as well as run its website. 

In bankruptcy, Barneys has whittled down its size from more than ten namesake stores to five. While experts have said Barneys’ brand in the luxury space remains strong, the future of its remaining stores has been in question. Authentic Brands would still try to renegotiate the leases for some of its best properties as part of the deal, including staying in Madison Avenue but downsizing its presence. Barneys filed for Chapter 11 protection in August and a bankruptcy auction is scheduled for later this month. 

Putting Barneys inside Saks would echo a move it and other department stores, including Macy’s, have taken to add variety to their shopping experiences. Sak’s experiments with its stores in recent years include creating wellness centers. The brand is one of the brighter spots within parent Hudson’s Bay Company’s portfolio.