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Retail briefs

Bon-Ton finalizes Elder-Beerman buy

The Bon-Ton Stores on Friday completed its tender offer for all outstanding shares of common stock of The Elder-Beerman Stores Corp. at a price of $8.00 per share in cash. A total of 10,893,005 shares were tendered pursuant to the offer that expired Oct. 24. All such shares have been accepted for purchase in accordance with the terms of the offer. Additionally, the Bon-Ton said it has approved financing agreements worth a combined $675 million.

At the time of the purchase, Bon-Ton had 72 stores and Elder-Beerman had 69 stores.

TJX Cos. to purchase Bob's Stores

The TJX Companies Inc. announced that it signed an agreement to purchase substantially all of the assets of Bob's Stores, a Connecticut-based, value-oriented retail chain of 36 stores in the Northeast, offering branded apparel and footwear. Bob's Stores and its subsidiaries have filed voluntary petitions under Chapter 11. TJX expects the transaction to close no later than the end of December 2003.

Under the agreement, TJX would purchase the assets of Bob's Stores for $100 million, less various adjustments, and assume store leases and operating contracts to be designated by TJX. TJX expects to assume most, but not all, of Bob's Stores' leases. The purchase price will be reduced for various adjustments, including reductions in inventory and the customer, employee and post-bankruptcy petition trade payables assumed by TJX. The transaction is subject to a number of conditions, including bankruptcy court and regulatory approval.

Saks Fifth Avenue chief resigns

Retailer Saks Inc. announced that Christina Johnson has resigned as president and ceo of Saks Fifth Avenue Enterprises (SFAE) to devote more time to family matters. Her successor has been selected and the company will make an official announcement in December. The new president and ceo will begin in January 2004.

In the interim, Steve Sadove, vice chairman, will assume day-to-day leadership of the SFAE organization. He joined the company in January 2002 to oversee the operations of both the company's business segments, SFAE and SDSG.

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