Bloomberg the Company

Bloomberg Anywhere Login

Bloomberg

Connecting decision makers to a dynamic network of information, people and ideas, Bloomberg quickly and accurately delivers business and financial information, news and insight around the world.

Company

Financial Products

Enterprise Products

Media

Customer Support

  • Americas

    +1 212 318 2000

  • Europe, Middle East, & Africa

    +44 20 7330 7500

  • Asia Pacific

    +65 6212 1000

Follow Us

Industry Products

Sports Direct Makes $105 Million Debenhams Bet After Stake Sale

Don't Miss Out —
Follow us on:

Jan. 16 (Bloomberg) -- Sports Direct International Plc, the U.K. sporting-goods retailer controlled by billionaire Mike Ashley, sold a recently acquired stake in Debenhams Plc and replaced it with a 64 million-pound ($105 million) wager on the department-store chain’s share price.

After selling the 4.6 percent holding, acquired earlier this month, Sports Direct has entered a so-called put option agreement over a 6.6 percent stake in London-based Debenhams, it said today in a statement. The option would be activated should Debenhams’ share price fall below an unspecified level.

“Normally this would be a bearish sign, but presumably he thinks this will give him more leverage in his negotiations with the beleaguered business,” Nick Bubb, an independent retailing analyst, said of Ashley’s possible intentions.

Sports Direct, which has approximately 400 stores across the U.K., repeated its intention to be a supportive stakeholder in Debenhams and reiterated that it “wishes to explore options at an operational level to work together with Debenhams.”

The sports retailer’s maximum exposure under the put option is limited to about 64 million pounds, it said.

The exercise price was not disclosed in the statement. Sports Direct could not immediately be reached for comment.

To contact the reporter on this story: Katarina Gustafsson in Stockholm at kgustafsson@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Celeste Perri at cperri@bloomberg.net

Please upgrade your Browser

Your browser is out-of-date. Please download one of these excellent browsers:

Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera or Internet Explorer.