Crescent rings up $177m retailer purchase

An affiliate of shar’iah-compliant Crescent Capital Investments has announced plans to privatise Loehmann’s.

Atlanta-based private equity firm Crescent Capital Investments, through one of its affiliates, is acquiring fashion retailer Loehmann’s in a going-private transaction worth approximately $177 million (€150 million).

The CIT Group/Business Credit and Silver Point Finance have agreed to provide about $100 million in debt financing. Crescent has agreed to pay $23 per Loehmann’s share.

Loehmann’s is a specialty discount retailer of women’s and men’s clothing and accessories that sells designer and brand names for prices that are between 30 percent and 65 percent cheaper than department store prices. The company currently operates 48 stores in cities across 17 states. Loehmann’s chief executive officer and chief financial officer will remain as senior management.

Crescent Capital Investments, founded in 1997, is the U.S. private equity arm of Bahrain-based First Islamic Investment Bank, which has assets of more than $600 million in 11 transactions with an aggregate enterprise value of more than $1.1 billion. The firm typically shuns companies in the alcohol, gambling, and media industries, due to shar’iah, the Islamic law governing what is sinful. Back in October, Crescent announced the sale of healthcare IT services portfolio company Medifax-EDISM to WebMD for $280 million.