Saks, Inc.

Saks, Inc., originally Proffitt's Inc. until 1998, was a Fortune 1000 operator of high-end department stores in the United States under the nameplate Saks Fifth Avenue. It was founded in Birmingham, Alabama. Hudson's Bay Company acquired Saks in November 2013.

Saks, Inc.
Proffitts Inc. (1919–1998)
Founded1998 in Birmingham, Alabama United States (1919 as Proffitt's)[1]
HeadquartersNew York City, New York, United States
Number of locations
International: 7
Saks Fifth Avenue: 49
OFF 5TH: 110 (2016)[2][3]
Area served
United States
Key people
Stephen Sadove
(Chairman and CEO)
Kevin Wills (CFO)
Revenue US$ 3.147 billion (2013)[1]
US$ 138.49 million (2013)[1]
US$ 62.88 million (2013)[1]
Total assets US$ 2.09 billion (2013)[1]
Total equity US$ 1.149 billion (2013)[1]
OwnerNRDC Equity Partners
Number of employees
12,900 (January 2011)[1]
ParentHudson's Bay Company
SubsidiariesSaks Fifth Avenue


Proffitt's Inc.

Proffitt's Inc. began as five Proffitt's stores in the Knoxville, Tennessee, metropolitan area. After going public under the symbol PRFT on the NASDAQ stock exchange in 1987, Proffitt's Inc. grew by acquiring several department stores. In 1989 the company purchased 18 Hess's locations in Tennessee, Virginia, Kentucky, and Georgia. From 1994 to 1998, the company added McRae's, Younkers, Parisian, Herberger's, Carson Pirie Scott, Boston Store, and Bergner's chains, as well as additional stores from Loveman's, Parks-Belk, and Brody's, which were converted into existing store nameplates. After acquiring Parisian, Proffitt's relocated its corporate headquarters to Birmingham, Alabama, from Knoxville in October 1997. Although the full Saks company no longer has a store in Mississippi, Saks operates its data services from the former McRae's headquarters in Jackson, Mississippi.

Saks, Inc.

In September 1998, the company acquired the holding company for the luxury retailer Saks Fifth Avenue, Saks Holdings, Inc., and subsequently changed its legal name to Saks, Incorporated. The acquisition brought the Saks Fifth Avenue and Off 5th franchises, as well as Folio, a mail-order business and, an online retailer.

The former Saks Fifth Avenue properties became the Saks Fifth Avenue Enterprises division of the company with the larger Birmingham-based department store division becoming the Saks Department Store Group. The company's main-line department store group was made up of its Southern Department Store Group: McRae's and Proffitt's, the Northern Department Store Group: Bergner's, Boston Store, Carson Pirie Scott, Herberger's and Younkers, the company's Specialty Department Store Group Parisian, and the company's Saks Fifth Avenue Enterprises which included Saks Fifth Avenue and Off 5th.

In 2001, the company recorded record revenues of $6.6 billion, making it a member of the Fortune 500 and one of the largest operators of department stores in the United States. The company was also a primary sponsor of the Bruno's Memorial Classic golf tournament, now known as the Regions Charity Classic. The company moved its headquarters to Midtown Manhattan, New York City in 2007.[4]

In 2005, vendors filed against Saks alleging unlawful chargebacks. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) investigated the complaint for years, and according to the New York Times "exposed a tangle of illicit tactics that let Saks ... keep money it owed to clothing makers", inflating Saks' yearly earnings up to 43% and abusively collecting around $30 million from suppliers over seven years.[5] Saks settled with the SEC in 2007, after firing three or more executives involved in the fraudulent activities.[6][5] In March, 2005, Saks announced to restate financial results from fiscal 1999 through the third quarter of fiscal 2004 to correct some accounting errors related to its previously recorded operating leases.[7]


By 2005, Saks Incorporated began to seek a narrower focus towards the luxury-oriented retail synonymous with its Saks Fifth Avenue stores. The decision resulted in a July 2005 sale of its combined 47 Proffitt's and McRae's stores to Belk for approximately $622 million.

On October 31 that same year, Saks announced that it was selling the 142 stores within its Northern Department Store Group, including Carson Pirie Scott, Bergner's, Younkers, Herberger's, and Boston Store to Bon-Ton Stores, Inc., for $1.1 billion; the transaction was complete as of March 6, 2006.[8]

On August 2, 2006, Saks Incorporated announced that it had agreed to sell its upscale 38 Parisian stores, along with two regional distribution centers and Birmingham corporate headquarters to Belk, which rebranded them under their own name in the third quarter of 2007.

On November 5, 2008, Saks announced the closure of the unprofitable Club Libby Lu chain.[9]

On July 29, 2013, Toronto-based Hudson's Bay Company announced that it will buy Saks Incorporated for US$2.4 billion.[10]

Former department stores


  1. "2010 Form 10-K, Saks Incorporated". United States Securities and Exchange Commission.
  3. Kapner, Suzanne (25 October 2015). "Lord & Taylor Jumps Into Discount Game" via
  4. "Corporate Addresses." Saks Incorporated. Retrieved on March 1, 2010.
  5. Barbaro, Michael (2007-09-06). "Saks Settles With S.E.C. on Overpayments". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2015-09-21.
  6. "Saks Inc. Settles Financial Reporting and Related Charges by SEC" (Press release). Securities and Exchange Commission. 5 September 2007. Retrieved 2014-05-21.
  7. "Saks to restate financial results over accounting errors, announces informal SEC probe". Archived from the original on 2013-10-19.
  8. "Investor Relations - Saks Incorporated".
  9. Saks To Close Club Libby Lu Chain After 5 Turbulent Years Archived 2008-11-08 at the Wayback Machine
  10. "Hudson's Bay to Buy Luxury Retailer Saks for $2.4 Billion". 29 July 2013. Retrieved 23 May 2018 via
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