Icahn Reportedly Wins Pep Boys Bidding Battle For $1B; Bridgestone Leaves Race

And just like that, it appears the auto parts retailer love triangle has ended: Bridgestone, the one-time preferred suitor of Pep Boy, reportedly bowed out of the months-long bidding war with Icahn Enterprises. 

The Chicago Tribune reports that Bridgestone, which Pep Boys originally agreed to sell itself to for $835 million in October, won’t counter Icahn’s latest $1 billion for Manny, Moe, and Jack.

If Bridgestone follows through with its decision to drop its love for Pep Boys, the company likely won’t go away empty-handed. When Pep Boys agreed last week to a new $17 a share (about $950 million) deal with the Japanese company, it included a $39.5 million break-up fee if Pep Boys ultimately sold to a different company.

While we weren’t really anticipating a bidding war when Pep Boys announced a deal in October to sell its 800 retail locations to Bridgestone — which operates 2,200 tire and car service centers in the U.S. under the Firestone Complete Auto Care, Tires Plus, Hibdon Tires Plus and Wheel Works brands — that is exactly what happened.

In early December, Icahn, the operator of Auto Plus, offered to pay $837 million ($15.50/share) for Manny, Moe, and Jack.

From there, Bridgestone upped its offer to about $950 million, a deal that Pep Boys also agreed to.

On Monday, Icahn upped its bid one more time to the tune of $1 billion, or $18.50 per share.

Icahn appears to win $1 billion Pep Boys bidding war; Bridgestone bows out [Chicago Tribune]