LVMH and Tiffany & Co. may be poised to kiss and make up ahead of a dramatic court battle over their $16 billion proposed marriage, The Post has learned.
The luxury conglomerate and the storied New York jeweler are renegotiating the terms of their proposed union after LVMH tried to walk away last month — sparking a heated legal battle that’s slated to go to trial in January, sources said.
The new terms would see LVMH, the French luxury giant behind pricey labels like Louis Vuitton and Fendi, purchase Tiffany for $130 to $133 per share, according to CNBC, a slight discount from the original price of $135 per share that the companies settled on last year, valuing the company at more than $16 billion. Each dollar that’s knocked off the per-share purchase price would save LVMH about $121 million based on Tiffany’s number of outstanding shares.
Tiffany has indicated that it’s open to a lower price as long as it isn’t less than $130 per share and LVMH closes the deal without changing any more terms, according to the Financial Times, which first reported on the renegotiations Tuesday.
LVMH declined to comment on the reported talks. Tiffany did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The developments came a day after the European Commission cleared the blockbuster luxury acquisition, giving the deal the final regulatory approval it needed to complete the deal ahead of a Nov. 24 deadline set last year, Tiffany said in a securities filing.
The bitter bitter legal spat was sparked by LVMH’s move in early September to postpone its November nuptials, prompting the New York-based engagement ring maker to sue to keep the deal intact.
Tiffany’s Delaware Chancery Court lawsuit accuses Paris-based LVMH of making excuses for why it could not be wed by Nov. 24, and of dragging its feet on seeking approval for the acquisition from antitrust authorities in key jurisdictions including the European Union.
Depositions in the case — including possible testimony from billionaire LVMH chief Bernard Arnualt — are expected to begin early next month, which may have put pressure on LVMH to renegotiate the deal.
LVMH countersued late last month, claiming that it’s entitled to back out of the $16 billion merger because Tiffany’s business prospects had turned “dismal” as a result of the coronavirus pandemic that led the 183-year-old retailer to post a $65 million loss in the spring. Tiffany called the argument “specious” given that it returned to profitability after one rough quarter.
LVMH has also cited a letter from the French government that purportedly barred it from proceeding with the deal in response to the US’s threat to impose tariffs on French goods. Tiffany has blasted those claims as “excuses,” alleging that LVMH has been deliberately stalling to get out of the deal.
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