British luxury goods retailer Burberry rejects takeover offers from US handbag maker Coach

UK's biggest luxury goods retailer Burberry is reported to have rejected multiple takeover offers in recent months from US handbag maker Coach Inc.

The Financial Times yesterday reported Coach had made informal cash and stock takeover offers for Burberry, but it was unclear what premium was offered or whether Burberry engaged in serious talks with Coach.

However, a potential deal would have created company with a market value of over $20 billion, the report said.

Coach had hired three investment banks including independent advisory group Evercore Partners while, Burberry had hired London-based advisory firm Robey Warshaw, the report added.

The Burberry fashion house was founded in 1856 in Basingstoke in Hampshire, UK, by Thomas Burberry, who was at the time an apprentice draper.

As a specialist in outdoor sportswear, the designer quickly established a wealthy clientele who devoted themselves to hunting and fishing.

The company expanded rapidly and now has more than 500 stores in over 50 countries, including 7 in India, and a market cap of $7.84 billion and no debt.

Based in New York City, Coach is known for accessories and gifts for women and men, including handbags, men's bags, women's and men's small leather goods, footwear, outerwear, ready-to-wear, watches, travel accessories, scarves, sunwear, fragrance, jewelry, and other accessories.

It has 425 stores in North America, around 520 directly-operated stores in Asia, and around 40 in Europe.

Coach also operates e-commerce websites in the US, Canada, Japan, Mainland China, the UK and South Korea.

It employs around 17,000 people, annual turnover of $4.24 billion, and currently has a market cap of around $10.1 billion.