May 8 (UPI) -- Luxury handbag maker Coach Inc. announced Monday it will buy competitor Kate Spade & Company for $2.4 billion.
Kate Spade stockholders will be offered $18.50 per share in cash, a 27.5 percent increase over the company's stock price on Dec. 28, the day before media speculation about the sale began. The stock price was $18.37 per share on Monday. Coach said in a statement that it has received bridge financing for the acquisition, which is expected to close by the end of the third quarter. It added that Coach plans on "preserving Kate Spade's brand independence as well as retaining key talent."