Hudson’s Bay Co. (HBC), which is owned by NRDC Equity Partners of Purchase and overseen by CEO Richard Baker of Greenwich, said it is performing a “fleet review” of all of its 133 Saks Off 5th stores, with an expectation of closing 20. There are stores in White Plains on Tarrytown Road, in Harriman at Woodbury Common Premium Outlets and the Stamford Town Center.
In addition, HBC said it was closing all 37 of its Home Outfitters stores in Canada citing cost reduction and simplifying the business to improve profitability.
“Further streamlining our retail portfolio enables even greater focus on our businesses with the strongest growth opportunities,” said Helena Foulkes, who was named CEO of HBC in February 2018 after being executive vice president of CVS Health. “The divestiture of Gilt, rightsizing of Lord & Taylor, the recent merger of our European retail operations in Germany, and today’s announcement exemplify the bold strategic actions we are taking to set HBC up for long-term success.”
The company said in a statement that its review of Saks Off 5thstores would allow it to determine the best locations for the retailer.
In January, Baker, executive chairman of HBC, announced that he was buying nearly 18 million shares of the company from a subsidiary of Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan Board. The purchase was made by Rupert of the Rhine LLC, an entity controlled by Baker. The addition of those shares made Baker and his partners own 70 percent of the company.
“I am very pleased to increase my significant ownership in HBC and further demonstrate my commitment to the company,” Baker said in a statement.
Baker said he paid $9.45 Canadian per share ($7.03 U.S.), or 115 percent of the “market price” for the HBC shares.
NRDC bought HBC in 2008. HBC bought Saks Inc. in 2013 for $2.9 billion.
In October 2017, National Realty & Development Corp., which was founded by Baker’s father, Robert, broke ground for a $100 million condo project in New Rochelle on the site of the former Beckwith Pointe Beach Club.
The condominium development, which will include nine four-story buildings comprising 72 units as well as a clubhouse, is called WatermarkPointe. It is at the southern tip of Davenport Neck.