Kathmandu Surges After Briscoe Says It Will Make Takeover Offer

Kathmandu Holdings Ltd. surged the most on record after New Zealand retailer Briscoe Group Ltd. said it will make a takeover bid for the adventure clothing chain.

Briscoe has already acquired 19.9 percent of Kathmandu, buying a 5 percent stake over time and paying institutional shareholders NZ$1.80 a share for the remainder, the Auckland-based home-ware retailer said in a statement Tuesday. It will lodge a full takeover offer comprising cash and shares “imminently” for Kathmandu, which acknowledged the bid and declined to comment further.

Briscoe owns and operates the Briscoes Homeware and Rebel Sport retail chains in New Zealand, with a total of about 80 stores, under a limited franchise agreement with Australian company Rebel Sport Ltd. Kathmandu, which has a market capitalization of NZ$353 million ($241 million), sells adventure clothing and equipment at around 145 outlets in Australia and New Zealand and four in the U.K.

“I am excited by the potential that would arise from bringing together these two iconic retailers,” Briscoe Managing Director and majority shareholder Rod Duke said in the statement. “We each have strong and recognizable brands that I see as complementary.”

Kathmandu shares surged 26 percent to NZ$1.75 at 11:35 a.m. in Wellington after earlier reaching NZ$1.80. Briscoe gained 5 cents to NZ$2.90.