Stokke AS’s owner is exploring strategic options for the Norwegian children’s brand, which sells everything from cribs and high chairs to baby carriers and strollers, people with knowledge of the matter said.
(Bloomberg) — Stokke AS’s owner is exploring strategic options for the Norwegian children’s brand, which sells everything from cribs and high chairs to baby carriers and strollers, people with knowledge of the matter said.
South Korean investment company NXC Corp. is working with JPMorgan Chase & Co. and PNC Financial Services Group Inc.’s Harris Williams unit to study a range of alternatives for Stokke that could include a sale, the people said. NXC is also considering expanding the business by acquiring Bugaboo, a stroller maker owned by Bain Capital, one of the people said.
Stokke could be valued at about $1 billion in a potential deal, the person said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. The company is known for the Scandinavian design of its products including Tripp Trapp high chairs and Sleepi cribs, which can be reconfigured as beds as children grow.
NXC is a family office managing the fortune of late billionaire Kim Jung-ju, the founder of Nexon Co., maker of the popular online game “MapleStory.” It agreed to buy Stokke in 2013, ending more than 80 years of family ownership, and has since expanded it through further acquisitions.
In 2018 Stokke took control of JetKids, the maker of BedBox ride-on children’s suitcases that can be transformed into a space to sleep. Three years later it agreed to purchase Babyzen, a French company known for its fold-up Yoyo strollers popular with jet-setting parents.
NXC’s deliberations regarding Stokke are in the early stages and there’s no certainty they will lead to a transaction, the people said.
Representatives for JPMorgan and Bain declined to comment. NXC, Stokke and Harris Williams didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.
–With assistance from Vinicy Chan and Dinesh Nair.
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