Burberry rejects takeover bids from Coach

Burberry has rejected multiple takeover offers from Coach, the FT reported on Sunday. The market value of the combined firm would have been above $20 billion, according to the newspaper.

The report said proposals made by Coach were informal and anticipated a cash and stock takeover of Burberry. However, it was unclear at what premium the offers were made or if Burberry ever engaged in serious talks with Coach.

In October, Reuters quoted sources familiar with the matter as saying that the companies were not in active talks, after a report that suggested the two fashion companies were considering a tie-up.

Neither of the companies were immediately available for comment outside regular business hours.

At the time of the Reuters report, many in the industry were skeptical that a deal would happen with Burberry having previously shown no inclination to forge a future as part of a luxury group. Coach, however, was clearly determined to diversify as its Stuart Weitzman acquisition showed.

In a high-end handbag market that has been battered by multiple negative factors this year, nothing could be ruled out. But while the luxury sector is set to remain tough in 2017, Burberry is seeing signs of a recovery and with its new CEO, Marco Gobbetti, set to join in 2017, it’s seen as less likely that it would be open to a takeover approach.

Burberry Fall Winter 2016 ad campaign