Earlier this week, Target announced a partnership with online mattress and bedding company Casper, which is backed by some notable investors including actor Leonardo DiCaprio. Under the deal, Target will begin selling Casper's mattresses, plush sheets, a lounger and pillows, among other bedding items, at its 1,807 stores on June 18.
But, as Recode revealed on Friday, Target allegedly held discussions with Casper to acquire its business for $1 billion, but the two companies couldn't hash out a deal. Instead, Target settled with a minority stake.
Target declined to comment and Casper did not respond to a query.
This isn't the first recent acquisition that allegedly has slipped through Target's fingers.
Rumors circulated recently that the company was in advanced talks to buy organic grocer Sprouts Farmers Market (SFM) last summer, but that Target eventually ditched the effort. As Target appears to be falling behind Walmart in almost every category - especially grocery - not closing deals that could improve its prospects likely isn't the best move.
In part, the inability of Target to get a deal done could reflect the cautious management style of CEO Brian Cornell.
"We look at them [acquisitions] through a filter of what's going to really enhance our current business initiatives, so I would put out of the box [ideas] on the side and really think about M&A as something that is going to compliment and strengthen our core strategy, and help us accelerate and complement the interaction we have with Target guests," Cornell explained on a conference call this week when asked by an analyst on his acquisition philosophy.
Walmart, on the other hand, has been on somewhat of a shopping spree as of late.