Monday, March 15, 2010

Deal Is Near for the Sale of Hilfiger

Phillips-Van Heusen, the clothing conglomerate that owns Calvin Klein, is near a deal to buy Tommy Hilfiger, once a leading purveyor of colorful preppy clothing, for about 2.2 billion euros, or $3 billion, in cash and stock, people briefed on the matter said Sunday night.

Phillips-Van Heusen, which also owns Arrow and Izod and licenses brands like Geoffrey Beene and Kenneth Cole New York, is hoping to take advantage of Tommy Hilfiger’s strong European distribution channels for its own products, these people said. Despite Tommy Hilfiger’s reputation as a quintessentially American clothier, two-thirds of the company’s business is based in Europe.

A deal could be announced as soon as Monday morning, though these people warned that talks were continuing and a deal might not be reached.

Representatives for the two companies could not be reached for comment.

While Mr. Hilfiger no longer holds a management role at the company that bears his name, he remains a principal designer and a public face for the clothier.

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