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skirby

Will Dillard's Be Taken Over

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There is a rumor that Dillard's will be taken over by Hudson's Bay. which owns Saks and Lord & Taylor. 

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Speculation regarding Dillards is on several internet sites. Losing Dillards would be a real blow to Little Rock. If acquired it's doubtful that the home office would remain here, and the jobs would go elsewhere. This happened with the local banks and most recently with Alltel. 

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Speculation regarding Dillards is on several internet sites. Losing Dillards would be a real blow to Little Rock. If acquired it's doubtful that the home office would remain here, and the jobs would go elsewhere. This happened with the local banks and most recently with Alltel. 

If Dillard's was bought out the loss of jobs would be the main topic but there might be a number of pros for Little Rock in the future.  Dillard's has not been the best involving itself in the community. It is almost a no show. I wouldn't consider the Park Plaza location any type of flagship operation. If HB bought out Dillard's the the Park Plaza location might become a Saks or the east building might become a Saks. With Dillard's out of the picture as having a headquarters location in LR then Macy's might enter the Arkansas market. As for their headquarters it would make a great location for a tech  company. It already has a data center and it could support the completion of the River Trail. Dillard's has opposed the completion or has shown no support.Instead,  if the company that owned the headquarters  supported the River Trail they could open their building up for their employees to use the trail.

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One thing to consider is that Hudson Bay may be interested in Dillard's but is the Dillard family willing to sell. The Dillard family controls most of the voting stock and they can block any sale of the company. Hudson Bay bought Saks for a couple of billion so money talks. I don't know if Dillard's could demand such a price.

If Dillard's is sold I doubt that the Dillard's at Park Plaza would be converted into a Saks. This market, I believe, is too small for a Saks.

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If Dillard's was bought out the loss of jobs would be the main topic but there might be a number of pros for Little Rock in the future.  Dillard's has not been the best involving itself in the community. It is almost a no show. I wouldn't consider the Park Plaza location any type of flagship operation. If HB bought out Dillard's the the Park Plaza location might become a Saks or the east building might become a Saks. With Dillard's out of the picture as having a headquarters location in LR then Macy's might enter the Arkansas market. As for their headquarters it would make a great location for a tech  company. It already has a data center and it could support the completion of the River Trail. Dillard's has opposed the completion or has shown no support.Instead,  if the company that owned the headquarters  supported the River Trail they could open their building up for their employees to use the trail.

 

While I generally concur with your stated upsides, in my opinion none of that outweighs the tremendous fiscal and psychological loss of another large corporate HQ in our market.  This would be a tremendous blow.

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I worked for Dillard's back in 2008 and was laid off during the fall of that year.  There has long been talks of buyouts or in the case of the 2008 recession, the company folding completely (which came very close to happening).  Dillard's is still a family-run operation though and thus far they have refused to sell.  As far as the future of the company, I don't see anything but positives that can come from a buyout by Hudson's Bay.   Saks and Lord and Taylor are quality department stores.  However in terms of the effect on the Little Rock economy it would be a huge blow.  Little Rock as a city pulls above its weight and acts like a city much larger than what it is, being more comparable to Oklahoma City and Tulsa than Jackson and Augusta.  Part of the reason is all the corporations that are headquartered there and the white collar employment base that comes from them.  Even if Hudson's Bay kept some jobs in Little Rock, losing that corporate presence would be a blow.

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