Pure Fishing, Including Berkley, Abu and More to be Sold

Newell Brands (NYSE:NWL) has announced the expansion of its Accelerated Transformation Plan, adding Jostens and Pure Fishing to the list of potential divestitures previously announced. The company also announced the signing of a definitive agreement to sell The Waddington Group to Novolex Holdings LLC for approximately $2.3 billion. The company expects the transaction to be completed within approximately 60 days and result in after-tax proceeds of approximately $2.2 billion. Proceeds will be applied to deleveraging and share repurchase.

The company expects the expansion of its Accelerated Transformation Plan to accelerate value creation and more rapidly transform the portfolio to one best positioned to leverage the company’s advantaged capabilities in innovation, design and e-commerce. The plan is designed to significantly increase shareholder value through both meaningful returns of capital to shareholders and strengthened operational and financial performance, while simultaneously deleveraging the balance sheet.

Key components of the Accelerated Transformation Plan include:

  • Restructuring Newell Brands to a more than $9 billion global consumer products company with leading brands in seven core consumer divisions (Appliances & Cookware, Writing, Outdoor & Recreation, Baby, Food, Home Fragrance and Safety & Security);
  • Divesting non-core businesses representing approximately 35 percent of the company’s net sales (Jostens, Pure Fishing, Rubbermaid Commercial Products, Mapa/Spontex/Quickie, The Waddington Group, Process Solutions, Rawlings, Goody, Rubbermaid Outdoor/Closet/Refuse & Garage and U.S. Playing Cards) at value creating multiples;
  • Applying approximately $10 billion in after-tax proceeds from divestitures in combination with free cash flow from operations after dividends to debt repayment and significant accretive share repurchase; and
  • Maintaining the company’s commitment to its investment grade rating and to the annual dividend of 92 cents per share through 2019, growing thereafter within our target 30 to 35 percent payout ratio range.

“Our actions to focus the portfolio and create a global consumer goods company with net sales of greater than $9 billion will create significant value for shareholders through the strengthening of our operating performance and financial flexibility and the return of capital to shareholders from divestiture proceeds,” said Michael Polk, Newell Brands Chief Executive Officer. “We are acting decisively to make Newell Brands a simpler, stronger and faster company, best positioned to leverage our competitively advantaged capabilities in innovation, design and e-commerce. The new portfolio will comprise seven category-based divisions with roughly 20 percent of their U.S. sales e-commerce derived, enabling our company to compete much more effectively in the rapidly changing retail environment. The focused portfolio will have a much simpler operational footprint that maintains the company’s strong route-to-market scale in North America, Europe and Latin America. Simplification will enable speed and agility to take costs out, bring innovations to market and accelerate the identification of future opportunities for growth and margin development.”