RICHMOND, Va. -
In what a mattress maker calls a \"potentially decade-long event,\" Heilig-
Meyers sold a controlling stake in toBain Capital, a lucrative mattress discount store retail chain that is the parent company of bedding maker Sealy.
The specific terms of the sale have not yet been disclosed, but Heilig-
Meyers is expected to exceed $0. 23 billion, including $0. 218 billion in cash. Heilig-
Meyers will retain a 7% stake in the mattress discount store.
LateAugust is expected to complete sales. Heilig-
Meyers said the proceeds from the sale would reduce the company\'s overall debt by more than 20%.
The mattress discount store with 236 stores is the biggest customer of Sealy.
Last year, sales were $0. 25 billion, and sales of Sealy products were just over half.
The rest are from private.
LabelComfort Source brand produced by mattress discount store.
Boston-based investment firm Bain also has more than 100 other companies including Domino Pizza, Staples and Totes Isotoner.
The new ownership will allow the mattress discount store to expand to more tops more quickly
According to Jon stoutner, the retailer\'s chief operating officer, 25 major metropolitan areas are their main population targets.
\"We intend to have 600 to 800 stores in five years,\" he said . \".
\"This will enable us to grow at a rate that will consolidate our position as numbers --
One bedding expert.
\"The other two companies are considered to be companies competing for mattress discounts, and the second is the mattress giant.
The largest bedding chain, and Fenway partners, owner of Simmons.
Phil Lang, president of the mattress giant, will not confirm or deny his interest in the mattress discount store.
But Langdid says his company is still in a positive growth model.
\"We are still considering any acquisitions that make sense in fair market value,\" Lang said . \".
\"There is now a company that has both retailers and manufacturers, and I think it is important for large retailers to enter the manufacturing field. \" Heilig-
Meyers operates 813 stores in its own name and is expected to sell 97 more
William drew Sands
Commenting on the performance of the mattress discount store, Meyers chairman and CEO said, \"the business is very good.
It\'s just a situation where we focus on the core business and use the proceeds to pay off the debt so we can start the process of re-designing the core business.
\"Ron Jones, head of Sealy, played down concerns from independent retailers about Bain pushing for a partnership between Sealy and mattress discount stores.
\"Sealy is not directly involved in the deal or the equity structure of the mattress discount store,\" Jones said . \".
\"Sealy senior manager is the owner of Sealy and we have taken advantage of almost all net assets of Sealy\'s future prospects.
So our interest is to take care of Sealy and take care of all of our Sealycustomers.
We will not create an unfair competitive environment for any customer.
\"There\'s at least one independent Sealy dealer, and Gary Gevurtz, president of the Philadelphia somnia furniture store, doesn\'t seem to worry.
\"I don\'t feel threatened,\" he said . \"
\"I don\'t think Sealy will shoot himself in the foot, compete with their dealers and create an unfair advantage.
If I feel that it is unfair for them to offer a mattress discount because of the relationship, I will not be happy.