Samsonite close to buying Tumi Holdings

Samsonite International, the world's biggest luggage maker, is close to finalizing a deal to buy Tumi Holdings Inc, The Wall Street Journal yesterday reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

A deal could be announced as soon as this week, but the report did not mention the financial terms of the deal.

Tumi has a market value of $1.4 billion, and a deal could be close to $2 billion, the report said.

Founded in 1975 by Charlie Clifford, New Jersey-based Tumi is a manufacturer of suitcases and bags for travel and also supplies accessories such as belts, pens, and electronic equipment.

The company also had a licensing agreement with Italian motorcycle manufacturer Ducati, launching a collection of eight co-branded pieces.

Founded by Jesse Shwayder in 1910 in Denver, Colorado, as a trunk manufacturing company, Hong Kong Stock Exchange-listed Samsonite is the world's largest travel luggage company.

Samsonite moved its headquarters from Denver to Mansfield, Massachusetts in 2007 after CVC Capital Partners acquired the company for $1.7 billion.

Its brands include Samsonite, American Tourister, High Sierra, Hartmann, Lipault, and Speck. Its products were sold at more than 46,000 points of sale in over 100 countries through wholesale and retail distribution channels.

Nearly forty percent of all Samsonite hard luggages are manufactured at its plant in Nashik in India.