Friday 18 October 2019

JD Sports agrees £90 million Footasylum takeover

The move comes just weeks after the retailer said it had no intention of making an offer.

Footasylum was established in 2005 by one of the co-founders of JD Sports (PA)
Footasylum was established in 2005 by one of the co-founders of JD Sports (PA)

By Alys Key, Press Association City Reporter

JD Sports is to buy fellow retailer Footasylum in a deal valuing the company at more than £90 million.

The sportswear chain said it has agreed to pay 82.5p per share for the company, marking a 77.4% increase on Footasylum’s closing price of 46.5p last week.

It comes just a month after JD said it had no intention of making an offer despite acquiring a stake of 8.3% in the firm, which was later raised to more than 18%.

Pentland, the majority shareholder of JD Sports, also has a 2.6% holding in Footasylum.

The Footasylum board has concluded that the offer represents the best strategic option for Footasylum and its employees Footasylum executive chairman Barry Bown

Footasylum was founded in 2005 by David Makin, one of the co-founders of JD Sports.

It focuses on the footwear and apparel markets, targeting a younger trend-led consumer.

JD said it expects the combined business to be able to take advantage of opportunities not available to either on an individual basis.

Barry Bown, executive chairman of Footasylum, said: “The Footasylum board has concluded that the offer represents the best strategic option for Footasylum and its employees.

“It believes the offer fairly reflects Footasylum’s current market position and prospects on a standalone basis and, as such, that Footasylum shareholders should be given the opportunity to realise value from the offer.”

The offer will be subject to a shareholder vote, with the deal expected to complete in April or May.

JD’s executive chairman Peter Cowgill said: “We are pleased to make this offer for Footasylum, which is very complementary to our existing businesses in the UK.

“We believe that there will be significant operational and strategic benefits through the combination of the very experienced and knowledgeable management team at Footasylum and our own expertise.”

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