NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Naked Brand Group Inc. (NASDAQ:NAKD) (“Naked”), an innovative fashion and lifestyle brand, and privately held Bendon Limited (“Bendon”), a global leader in intimate apparel and swimwear, today jointly announced that they have entered into an Agreement and Plan of Reorganization (the “Merger Agreement”) pursuant to which Naked’s shareholders will, upon the closing of the merger, receive approximately 7% of the outstanding ordinary shares of the combined company on a fully diluted basis, subject to adjustment.
Carole Hochman, Naked’s Chief Executive Officer and Chief Creative Officer, stated, “We are pleased to have reached a definitive agreement with Bendon, which is the culmination of much hard work. We believe that this merger is structured to benefit our shareholders as well as the go-forward business. We look forward to closing this transaction in due course.”
Justin Davis-Rice, Executive Chairman of Bendon, commented, “This transformative merger will create a powerful portfolio of iconic innerwear, sleepwear, and swimwear brands. We believe this merger will enable the combined company to strengthen its global industry leadership and continue to drive growth over the long-term.”
Pursuant to the Merger Agreement, Naked and Bendon, respectively, will become wholly owned subsidiaries of Bendon Group Holdings Limited, a newly formed Australian holding company (“Holdco”), and the shareholders of Bendon and the stockholders of Naked, respectively, will become the shareholders of Holdco.
The Merger Agreement, which has been approved by the board of directors of both Naked and Bendon, is subject to approval by Naked’s stockholders and other customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals, including the filing and effectiveness of a registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) and the listing of Holdco’s ordinary shares on Nasdaq or the NYSE and is expected to be completed by the end of October 2017.
For additional information on the transaction, see Naked’s Current Report on Form 8-K, which will be filed promptly and which can be obtained, without charge, at the SEC's internet site (http://www.sec.gov).
Duane Morris LLP is serving as legal counsel to Naked. Graubard Miller, Russell McVeagh and Wynn Williams are serving as legal counsel to Bendon and Holdco.
About Naked Brand Group Inc.:
Naked was founded on one basic desire--to create a new standard for how products worn close to the skin fit, feel, and function. Naked's women's and men's collections are available at www.wearnaked.com, and Naked has a growing retail footprint for its innovative and luxurious innerwear products in some of the leading online and department stores in North America including Nordstrom, Bloomingdale's, Dillard's, Soma, Saks Fifth Avenue, Amazon.com, BareNecessities.com, and more. In 2014, renowned designer and sleepwear pioneer Carole Hochman joined Naked as Chief Executive Officer, Chief Creative Officer, and Chairwoman with the goal of growing Naked into a global lifestyle brand. In June 2015, Naked announced a strategic partnership with NBA Miami HEAT (now Chicago Bulls) star Dwyane Wade. The 3-time NBA Champion, 11-time All Star, and Olympic Gold Medalist joined Naked's Advisory Board, and is the Creative Director for a signature collection of men's innerwear which launched in 2016. Naked is headquartered in New York City and plans to expand in the future into other apparel and product categories that can exemplify the mission of the brand, such as activewear, swimwear, sportswear and more. http://www.nakedbrands.com/
About Bendon Limited:
Bendon is a global leader in intimate apparel and swimwear renowned for its best in category innovation in design, and technology and unwavering commitment to premium quality products throughout its 70-year history. Bendon has a portfolio of 10 highly productive brands, including owned brands Bendon, Bendon Man, Davenport, Evollove, Fayreform, Hickory, Lovable (in Australia and New Zealand) and Pleasure State, as well as licensed brands Heidi Klum Intimates and Swimwear and Stella McCartney Lingerie and Swimwear.
In October 2014 Bendon announced supermodel and television host Heidi Klum as the Creative Director and face of Bendon's flagship Intimates collection, succeeding Elle Macpherson after 25 years with the brand. Bendon products are distributed through over 4,000 doors across 43 countries as well as through a growing network of 60 company-owned Bendon retail and outlet stores in Australia, New Zealand and Ireland. Bendon’s global supply chain is one of its strongest assets, controlling sourcing, manufacturing and production at over 30 partner facilities across Asia. Bendon has more than 700 staff at offices and stores in Auckland, Sydney, New York, London and Hong Kong and is poised for continued meaningful growth as it opens additional retail stores and expands its current portfolio of products. http://www.bendongroup.com/
Additional Information and Where to Find It
Naked and Holdco intend to file relevant materials with the SEC, including a Registration Statement on Form F-4 to be filed by Holdco that will include a proxy statement of Naked that also constitutes a prospectus of Holdco and a definitive proxy statement/prospectus (when they become available) will be sent to Naked. The proxy statement/prospectus will be mailed to stockholders of Naked as of a record date to be established for voting on the proposed business combination. Such documents are not currently available. BEFORE MAKING ANY VOTING OR INVESTMENT DECISION WITH RESPECT TO THE BUSINESS COMBINATION, INVESTORS AND SECURITY HOLDERS ARE URGED TO READ THE PROXY STATEMENT/PROSPECTUS AND OTHER RELEVANT MATERIALS THAT WILL BE FILED WITH THE SEC CAREFULLY AND IN THEIR ENTIRETY WHEN THEY BECOME AVAILABLE BECAUSE THEY WILL CONTAIN IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT NAKED, BENDON AND HOLDCO AND THE PROPOSED BUSINESS COMBINATION. Investors and security holders will be able to obtain free copies of the proxy statement/prospectus and other relevant materials containing important information about Naked, Bendon and Holdco once such documents are filed with the SEC, through the website maintained by the SEC at http://www.sec.gov. Copies of the documents filed with the SEC by Naked or Holdco when and if available, can be obtained free of charge on Naked’s website under the Investor Relations section at http://www.nakedbrands.com or by directing a written request to Naked Brand Group Inc., 10th Floor – 95 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016, Attention: Investor Relations; and/or on Bendon’s website at www.bendongroup.com or by directing a written request to Bendon Limited, 8 Airpark Drive, Airport Oaks, Auckland 2022, New Zealand or by emailing email@example.com.
Participants in the Solicitation
This is not a solicitation of a proxy from any investor or security holder. Naked and its directors and executive officers, under SEC rules, may be deemed to be participants in the solicitation of proxies of Naked’s stockholders in connection with the proposed transaction. Investors and security holders may obtain more detailed information regarding the names and interests in the proposed transaction of Naked’s directors and officers in Naked’s filings with the SEC. Additional information regarding the directors and executive officers of Naked is also included in Naked’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended January 31, 2017. Information regarding the persons who may, under SEC rules, be deemed participants in the solicitation of proxies to Naked’s shareholders in connection with the proposed transaction will be set forth in the proxy statement/prospectus for the proposed transaction when available.
No Offer or Solicitation
This communication shall neither constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any securities, nor shall there be any sale of securities in any jurisdiction in which the offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to the registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such jurisdiction.
Certain statements either contained in or incorporated by reference into this communication, other than purely historical information, including estimates, projections and statements relating to Naked’s or Bendon’s business plans, objectives and expected operating results, and the assumptions upon which those statements are based, are “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, included in or incorporated by reference into this communication regarding strategy, future operations, future transactions, future financial position, future revenue, projected expenses, prospects, plans and objectives of management are forward-looking statements. Examples of such statements include, but are not limited to, statements: express or implied regarding future financial performance, the effects of Naked’s and Bendon’s business models, the effects of the of the proposed business combination, the transactions contemplated thereby or any other actions to be taken in connection therewith; Naked’s continued listing on the NASDAQ Capital Market until closing of the proposed business combination; Naked’s continued compliance with the minimum shareholders’ equity requirements at the time of Naked’s next periodic report; Holdco’s anticipated listing on the NASDAQ Capital Market or the NYSE in connection with the closing of the proposed business combination; expectations regarding the capitalization, resources and ownership structure of Holdco; the adequacy of Holdco’s capital to support its future operations; Naked’s and Bendon’s plans, objectives, expectations and intentions; the nature, strategy and focus of the combined company; the executive and board structure of Holdco; and expectations regarding voting by Naked’s stockholders. Naked, Bendon and/or Holdco may not actually achieve the plans, carry out the intentions or meet the expectations disclosed in the forward-looking statements and you should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. Such statements are based on management’s current expectations and involve risks and uncertainties. Actual results and performance could differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements as a result of many factors, including, without limitation, risks and uncertainties associated with stockholder approval of and the ability to consummate the proposed business combination through the process being conducted by Naked, Holdco and Bendon, the ability of Naked, Holdco and Bendon to consummate the transaction contemplated by the Merger Agreement, the risk that one or more of the conditions to closing contained in the Merger Agreement may not be satisfied, including, without limitation, the effectiveness of the registration statement to be filed with the SEC or the listing of Holdco’s ordinary shares on the NASDAQ Capital Market or the NYSE, the lack of a public market for ordinary shares of Holdco and the possibility that a market for such shares may not develop, the ability to project future cash utilization and reserves needed for contingent future liabilities and business operations, the availability of sufficient resources of the combined company to meet its business objectives and operational requirements, the ability to realize the expected synergies or savings from the proposed business combination in the amounts or in the timeframe anticipated, the risk that competing offers or acquisition proposals will be made, the ability to integrate Naked’s and Bendon’s businesses in a timely and cost-efficient manner, the inherent uncertainty associated with financial projections, and the potential impact of the announcement or closing of the proposed business combination on customer, supplier, employee and other relationships. Naked disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances that exist after the date on which they were made.