Walmart is buying Bonobos for $310 million

Retailing giant Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) has announced an agreement to acquire Internet apparel company Bonobos for $310 million in cash. He will be reporting to Marc Lore, president and CEO of Walmart U.S. eCommerce (who joined with the Jet.com acquisition).

The announcement comes at a time of growth and innovation in e-commerce for Walmart.

"I would not like to be somebody playing in the grocery space right now", said Jan Rogers Kniffen, chief executive of retail consultancy firm J. Rogers Kniffen WWE in NY.

But after sitting down with the teams from Walmart and Jet.com and hearing their vision for Bonobos, "my mind exploded", Dunn wrote. Bonobos in particular has branched into brick and mortar, devising Bonobos Guideshops that provide opportunities to see, feel and try on clothes; Bonobos now has 35 Guideshops across the United States and in 118 Nordstrom stores and on Nordstrom.com.

Bonobos co-founder and CEO Andy Dunn, and other top executives, can earn an extra $20 million combined if they remain with Walmart for four years, one of these people said.

Walmart's newest acquisition may be small and digital, and Amazon's massive and real-world, but they're going for a very similar customer.




Analysts have noted that that the acquisition could have major strategic rewards for both Walmart and Bonobos. Wal-Mart has since bought clothing seller ModCloth, footwear retailer ShoeBuy.com and outdoor gear seller Moosejaw as it focuses on brands appealing to younger shoppers.

For Walmart, the deal marks at least its fourth acquisition of a digital-first retailer since Marc Lore took over as head of e-commerce in the USA last fall - others have included Modcloth and ShoeBuy. "In fact, Andy will be a great influence on the company, especially in leading our collection of exclusive brands offered online".

Bonobos had raised just under $128 million, with the last round in 2014, and had always said it had its sights set on an IPO. "We are excited about applying all that we have learned to help shepherd in the next era of retail". Customers took to Bonobos' social media pages in droves - and the vast majority were not happy about the deal.

"That will enhance the customer experience for our existing customers, " he said, while Walmart "can help the business of the companies that are new to our e-commerce family through synergies, through efficiencies in cost of goods and shipping rates".

"Bonobos is a brand with loyal customers, premium price points, and expertise in a differentiated niche", said Stephen Beck, a managing partner in a management consultancy firm.

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