Wesfarmers explores online retail with acquisition

By Grace Ormsby|16 June 2019

Wesfarmers is acquiring online retailer Catch Group Holdings in a move that complements Wesfarmers’ existing businesses, according to the firm advising the listed company.

Firm: Corrs Chambers Westgarth (Wesfarmers Limited), SBA Law (Catch Group Holdings Limited)

Deal: Wesfarmers is acquiring online retailer Catch Group Holdings Limited to build and invest in its data and digital capabilities.

Value: $230 million

Area: M&A, Retail

Key players: The Corrs team was led by corporate partners Russell Philip in Perth and Justin Fox in Melbourne. Partners Phil Catania and Jurgen Bebber also provided support.

Expertise was also drawn from partners Mark McCowan, Nathaniel Popelianski, Paul Burns and Jade Rowarth, the firm said.

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Deal significance: Wesfarmers is one of Australia’s largest listed companies and private sector employers, with more than 100,000 employees in diverse operations that encompass home improvement, outdoor living, apparel and general merchandise, office supplies, and an industrials division, Corrs Chambers Westgarth outlined.

The firm called Catch Group “an established, profitable and cash-generative online retail business offering branded products on a first-party and a third-party online marketplace”.

A statement said the acquisition complements Wesfarmers’ existing businesses and is in line with its focus of building and investing in data and digital capabilities.

Russell Philip, lead partner for Corrs Chambers Westgarth on the acquisition, said: “We are delighted to be able to support Wesfarmers in the significant expansion of its online marketplace strategy, including its digital and e-commerce capabilities.”

Phil Catania also commented on the acquisition, calling it “a great team effort from a wide range of Corrs practice groups across the country, and we look forward to working closely with Wesfarmers as it continues to build on its data and digital initiatives into the future”.

The firm noted the sale remains subject to satisfaction of a number of conditions, including approval from the ACCC merger clearance, which it said was expected in the coming months.

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Wesfarmers explores online retail with acquisition
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