PetSmart is getting a new home. BC Partners just acquired the Phoenix-based pet supplier for a whopping $8.7 billion, or $83 a share, making it the largest U.S. private equity deal of this year.
The London-based firm is said to have beat out Apollo Global Management (a rumored front runner) along with a joint offer from KKR and Clayton Dubilier & Rice in an auction process that has been going on for weeks.
“We are very pleased to add PetSmart to our portfolio of investments. PetSmart is an iconic brand and the category leader in the growing pet retail industry. We look forward to working with management to continue growing PetSmart’s business and executing against its recently announced strategic initiatives,” said Raymond Svider, a managing partner at BC Partners, in a statement.
This move comes after some investors have pushed the retailer to sell as same-store sales haven’t been too impressive. Last quarter’s sales were flat while sales had fallen the three previous months, something that hadn’t occurred in over a decade, reports Bloomberg. A big reason for the sales decline is the pet retailer has stiff competition from businesses like Amazon.com, which often offer lower prices and more convenience for pet owners.
“We are pleased to have reached this agreement with BC Partners, which maximizes value for all of our shareholders and best positions PetSmart to continue to meet the needs of pet parents,” said Gregory P. Josefowicz, chairman of PetSmart, in a statement.