Last month, “extreme value” retailer Five Below announced that it had received an investment from private equity firm Advent International. No financial terms were disclosed, except that existing shareholder LLR Partners would retain a “significant ownership stake.”
Today, Five Below told the SEC that it recently raised $194 million in new equity. None of the company’s insiders are talking, although one did say that it was “reasonable” to conclude that this new money refers to the Advent investment.
For what it’s worth, here is what I wrote about the deal last month (in the Term Sheet e-mail):
It’s a big deal not because of the dollars, but because it looks like Advent is betting on a very prolonged economic downturn. Five Below and its rivals have been expanding like crazy over the past few years, largely because so many people are looking to buy cheap stuff.
Maybe there is another play, such as expanding outside of the U.S. (Advent has strong international networks). Or maybe Advent views this as a quick-flip. (Did Dollar General blaze a path to public markets?) Maybe. For now, I’m sticking with economic pessimism.