When rumors of sales and acquisitions start popping up, it's usually in a given retailer's best interest to play their cards close to the chest and avoid spooking investors and markets alike. However, there's only so long gossip like that can be kept under wraps, and especially so for sought-after Cabela's.
In filings made to the Securities and Exchange Commission, Cabela's has noted that as part of a "strategic alternatives review process," investigation into the likelihood and consequences of a sale is a distinct possibility. The review, which the company originally announced in December 2015, comes at the reported urging of Elliott Management, the New York-based hedge fund that purchased an 11-percent stake in Cabela's in October.
“The results of this strategic alternatives review process could include, but are not limited to, a sale of Cabela’s or one of its businesses, including a sale of the bank or its assets, or a transaction combining a sale of the bank or all or a portion of its assets to one or more purchasers and a sale of the parent company (including all of its merchandising business) to one or more other purchasers,” the company said in the SEC documents.
The Omaha World Herald is also reporting that since Nordstrom sold its credit card business to TD Bank last year, Cabela's has been operating as the only U.S. retailer with such an operation still active. If the service gets shuttered, Cabela's full or piecemeal sale could signal a new age of alternative retail lending - as long as there are the startups ready to fill the gap.