Cowan analyst Oliver Chen was inclined to think Hudson's Bay might be more interested in buying a piece of Macy's, such as flagship store locations in Chicago or NY or its upscale Bloomingdale's brand. It could also bring in a partner. Many retail experts don't see Macy's fortunes improving anytime soon, particularly given its $7.5 billion in debt, which the Journal says is "complicating" a takeover. Most significantly, structural but related problems include the continued rise of the off-price channel and shifting millennial shopping habits - our view is that Macy's vendor and buying model and supply chain lead times are too long; lack of buying agility and speed has added markdown risk, weather risk, and inventory overages leading to too much unhealthy promotions on a multi-year period. It is facing mounting investor pressure to turn around its performance and reverse the stock drop. Starboard Value bought its Macy's stake in 2015 and from the start has pressed the company to spin off its real estate holdings.

The company's longtime Chairman and CEO Terry Lundgren is also about to depart the company, handing the reins to Macy's President Jeff Gennette. Hudson's Bay said it does not comment on rumors or speculation, while Macy's declined to comment.

As of January, Macy's operated more than 800 stores. It has 485 stores worldwide, while Macy's has more than 800.

Hudson's Bay Co has made a takeover approach for retail chain Macy's Inc, according to people familiar with the matter, in a deal that would push the Canadian department store operator deeper into the US market. One unnamed insider claims that the company would rather sell itself than let Starboard have its way.

But the retail sector has been pressured in recent years by a change in consumer habits.

Homemade Explosive Thrown Into Calif. Cheesecake Factory
Authorities then searched the restaurant and located a "detonated homemade pyrotechnic device", the Police Department stated. Police described the man as being Latino or Middle Eastern, about 6 feet tall, of thin build and with a heavy beard.

On the news, Macy's stock shot up. The activist, which held a 1 percent stake as of the end of September, said the property was worth $21 billion, including $4 billion alone for the flagship Herald Square store on 34th Street in Manhattan. The company had a market cap of C$1.82 billion ($1.40 billion) as of Thursday's close.

Macy's would be a challenge for Hudson's Bay to absorb.

The Cincinnati company has been looking for opportunities to boost sales, from buying upscale beauty brand Bluemercury to launching its own off-price stores called Macy's Backstage. But the company has resisted a traditional sale-lease back of its real estate portfolio - as Starboard and others have advocated, saying the move wouldn't be in its long-term interest.

A deal for the ailing Macy's chain would face a number of hurdles; the USA retailer is carrying roughly US$7.5 billion in debt, and HBC's market value stands at a mere US$1.8 billion compared with US$9.8 billion for Macy's, as of Friday morning. It was then when the Canadian retailer acquired Saks Fifth Avenue for $2.9 billion.