Luxury retailer Neiman Marcus Group abandoned its plans to go public, the latest sign of department-store woes. Just days after Macy’s Inc. and Kohl’s Corp. both reported slow sales and cut their forecasts, Neiman Marcus said it’s “not in its best interests to proceed with the initial public offering” at this time, according to a filing Friday. Macy’s, the largest department-store company, also pushed ahead with a plan this week to shutter 100 stores and eliminate a total of about 10,000 jobs.
Last month, Neiman Marcus reported plummeting sales and a wider loss for its fiscal first quarter, suggesting that a downturn among upscale chains was hitting the retailer particularly hard. Same-store sales, a closely watched benchmark, fell 8 percent in the three months ended Oct. 28, the company said in a statement at the time.
Neiman Marcus and its peers have been hit by two straight lackluster holiday seasons. Online shopping has poached its shopper base at the same time customers have shifted spending to services, experiences or savings. This past year, November and December were again marked by a rise in online orders and sluggish mall traffic.
Only three retail companies went public in the U.S. last year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg, raising a combined $314 million. That compares with seven IPOs in 2015, which raised $1.2 billion, and 11 listings in 2014 for volume of $1.7 billion.
Neiman Marcus, based in Dallas, filed a prospectus in August 2015, two years after a $6 billion buyout led by Ares Management LLC and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. This is not the first time Neiman Marcus – which also owns the Bergdorf Goodman luxury stores and the off-price Last Call clearance centers – has attempted an IPO since it was taken private in 2005. The retailer previously filed to go public in June 2013, before owners TPG and Warburg Pincus sold it to Ares and CPPIB.