Retailing: Marked Down to $2.4 Billion

Marked Down to $2.4 Billion

At a time when several struggling retail chains, including Gimbels and Ohrbach's, are closing their doors, St. Louis-based May Department Stores seems to be thinking only of expansion. Last week May, which operates 2,206 outlets, proposed a friendly merger with Associated Dry Goods, a New York City-based chain with 454 stores, among them Lord & Taylor. Experts estimate that the new company would rank among the top five retailers in the U.S.

May offered $2.7 billion for Associated. When the New York firm's directors did not respond, May made a hostile bid of $2.4 billion directly to shareholders. Wall Streeters doubt...

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