NEW YORK — Four months after it put itself up for sale, clothing company Tommy Hilfiger Corp. agreed to accept a $1.6-billion, or $16.80-a-share, cash bid from Apax Partners, a private investment company.
Hilfiger, known for its red, white and blue logo that resembles a signal flag in sailing regattas, expects the deal to close by spring 2006, subject to shareholder approval.
Although Apax did not detail its plans for Hilfiger, which went public in 1992, the firm is expected to be taken private. It is seen operating as a private company focused on expanding overseas and keeping its brand relevant in the U.S.
"When you are not in a public arena, you don't have to worry as much about short-term earnings prospects," said Robert Weible, a partner at Baker & Hostetler's Cleveland office.