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DSW buys stake in Canadian shoe retailer


New York -- DSW has closed on its acquisition of Town Shoes Limited, the largest footwear and accessories retailer in Canada, for $68.7 million in cash. DSW acquired a 49.2% interest in Town Shoes from certain clients of Alberta Investment Management Corporation (AIMCo) and other minority shareholders.

DSW's initial stake provides 50% voting control and board representation equal to the primary remaining shareholder, Callisto Capital. Peter J. Solomon Company served as financial advisor to DSW Inc.

Town Shoes is the market leader in branded footwear in Canada, with sales of CAD $291 million in its fiscal year ending Jan. Town operates 182 locations across Canada primarily under The Shoe Company, Shoe Warehouse and Town Shoes banners. The company is predominantly owned by Alberta Investment Management Corporation on behalf of certain of its clients, and Callisto Capital, a Canadian private equity firm.

"We're excited about our new relationship with Town Shoes,” said Mike MacDonald, president and CEO, DSW, when the company announced its intention to acquire the Canadian shoe retailer. “We have looked at Canadian entry options for some time and decided to acquire an existing operation with a long track record of success and to use this operation as a base from which we can establish the DSW brand in Canada."

Bruce Dinan, president and CEO, Town Shoes added that the combined retail banners provide different avenues for serving unique customer lifestyles in Canada, ranging from Town's full priced, specialty retail model to The Shoe Company's and Shoe Warehouse's off price concepts.

DSW plans to release its first quarter earnings results Wednesday, May 28, before the market opens.

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