Woolworth acquires direct marketer

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Woolworth Corp., New York, said it will buy Eastbay, a direct marketer of athletic footwear, apparel and equipment, for approximately $146 million. The deal expands Woolworth's commitment to the athletic footwear and apparel market, which already includes Foot Locker and Champs Sports retail chains, with 3,500 stores worldwide. "The acquisition of Eastbay is a logical complement to our athletic business," said Roger N. Farah, Chairman-CEO of Woolworth. Eastbay's catalog circulation increased 335% between fiscal 1992 and 1996 to 45.6 million copies. Eastbay will operate as part of Woolworth's Athletic group, but will retain both its management team and headquarters in Wausau, Wis. Woolworth's agency is in-house Barclay, Park & Church Advertising.

Copyright December 1996, Crain Communications Inc.

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