Zale Acquires Former Owner

March 19, 1999

Zale Acquires Former Owner

Zale Corp. of Dallas, TX, this week agreed to buy People's Jewellers, Canada's largest jewelry store chain and Zale's former owner, for $75.5 million ($115 million Canadian).

The acquisition is part of Zale's plan to expand internationally, said CEO and Chairman Robert DiNicola in a release. People's has 175 stores throughout Canada, and DiNicola says he plans to expand there.

The all-cash deal, which is not expected to dip into Zale's earnings, comes more than 10 years after the less successful sale of Zale to People's, according to the Toronto Star Business Reporter. People's paid $650 million for Zale in 1986, overextending the company's finances and driving People's and Zale into bankruptcy. People's went into receivership in 1993.

People's President Clare Copeland, former Zale CEO, said in a release People's welcomed the opportunity to become "the Canadian arm of Zale" and work for DiNicola, who "rebuilt Zale Corp. from the ground up."

- by Stacey King