VF completes Timberland acquisition, names new brand president

The parent company of The North Face, Vans and Jansport brands completed its previously announced acquisition of Timberland and SmartWool, naming a new president replacing Jeff Swartz along with the deal. SNEWS has the details.
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VF Corp. (NYSE:VF), parent to The North Face, Vans and Jansport brands, has completed its previously announced plans to acquire The Timberland Co. for $43 per share, or about $2.3 billion.

Along with the close of the sale, VF officials named Patrik Frisk as the new president of the Timberland brand, replacing Jeff Swartz. Company officials said Swartz, along with Carrie Teffner, Timberland vice president and CFO, and Danette Wineberg, Timberland vice president and general counsel and secretary are departing the brand to pursue other interests.

Timberland’s new president, Frisk, has been leading VF’s Outdoor & Action Sports group in Europe, the Middle East and Africa since 2009. He will relocate to Stratham N.H., where the company will keep its headquarters, officials said.

The SmartWool brand, owned by Timberland and also part of the acquisition, will remain headquartered in Steamboat Springs, Colo., and continue to be led by Mark Satkiewcz, president of SmartWool Americas.

Richard O'Rourke will continue as Timberland’s senior vice president, international, based in Wexham, England, with responsibility for the brand abroad and global distributors.

Timberland and SmartWool will join The North Face, Vans and Jansport in VF’s Outdoor & Action Sports Group, headed up by Steve Rendle. Company officials estimated the addition will add about $700 million to VF’s 2011 revenue and raise earnings by about $0.45 per share for the year, or about $0.25 per share, including acquisition expenses.

Timberland’s public stock (NYSE:TBL) was expected to cease trading on the New York Stock Exchange before the Sept. 14 market opening.

VF funded the deal with $400 million in floating rate notes due 2013, $500 million of 3.5-percent notes due 2021 and the remainder through a combination of cash and commercial paper.

"This acquisition strengthens VF's position within the outdoor industry by adding two strong, global, and authentic brands with significant momentum and growth opportunities,” VF Chairman and CEO Eric Wiseman said in a press release. “VF is committed to helping the Timberland and SmartWool brands reach their global growth potential, while maintaining each brand's unique essence."

-- David Clucas

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