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Gilt Acquired at Fraction of Its Once Billion-Dollar Valuation

Photo: Tim Boyle/Getty Images

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Hudson's Bay Company, the owner of Saks Fifth Avenue, just announced it is acquiring Gilt Groupe for $250 million in cash. Outlets like the New York Times, Re/code, and the Wall Street Journal reported last month that this deal was in the works. Now a press release from Hudson Bay reveals exactly what the new owners have in store for Gilt, the once red-hot flash sale that reached a valuation of over a billion dollars, but has struggled in past years.

The deal involves integration with the outlet store Saks Off 5th, including the introduction of a new return program at Saks Off 5th locations for Gilt merchandise. There will also be Gilt concept shops in-store at Saks Off 5th locations.

In turn, Hudson's Bay wants to leverage Gilt’s mobile and personalization capabilities. The company expects the Gilt acquisition to contribute approximately $500 million to HBC’s consolidated fiscal 2016 sales.

"HBC and Saks OFF 5TH are the ideal home for Gilt and our members," Gilt CEO Michelle Peluso said in a press release. "HBC understands our proposition and is committed to positioning our business for further success. Our members will find having a brick and mortar presence valuable and a positive addition to the Gilt experience. We are excited for our future and confident that we have the right team in place to continue to innovate the shopping experience and grow Gilt."