By Paul Pannone
As newZ of David’s Bridal grips the wedding industry competitors of the wedding dress giant dismiss the idea of the Devil They Know is better than any possible new ownership in the future. As the original eWedNewz story rises on the all-time list, readers taking the poll say Leonard Green is best-served to take the money and run, just like Martha Stewart did with Wedding Wire– just in time. Martha got her golden parachute from Catalyst investors. But so far wedding experts say they fail to see how David’s Bridal can do the same; given the struggles in the wedding business that have become more well-known in the investment world.
Wedding dress retailers are rolling the dice hoping any new management and leadership is better than the current philosophy that drives David’s.
So far 59% agree with Leonard Green’s decision, 11% disagree, feeling it’s a mistake for them to sell and 28% say it remains to be seen. Most comments involving David’s terrible service and treatment of brides is felt to be at the heart of the owner, Leonard Green’s, decision to bail out. But discussions with financial analysts and wedding dress manufacturers differ.
One source commented;
“Your analysis was spot on; they’re not seeing the growth. With the challenges involving weddings, they’re locked into a shrinking market. Without a 15% (or more) annual return Leonard Green– or any investment company– doesn’t want their capital tied up that way.”
Boutique dress stores and wedding experts defend their position, agreeing with Leonard Green to put David’s Bridal up for sale. Most say they’ve seen takeovers fail and would like this potential sale to be the worst in history. Sources say any sort of leveraged buyout will lead to even greater discord in management and operation of the chain’s stores.
What do you say?
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