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Findel rejects Mike Ashley's 'significantly undervalued' takeover offer

Multichannel home shopping and education supplies retail group Findel is the latest business battling the advances of Sports Direct’s Mike Ashley.

The board of Findel, which operates Studio Retail and Findel Education, said today (20 March) that a takeover offer made by Ashley’s Sports Direct group “significantly undervalues” the company. It added the board is “unanimous in its rejection of the offer at 161 pence per share”.

Findel’s response comes after Sports Direct, on Tuesday, posted an offer document containing the full terms and conditions of its mandatory offer for the entire issued and to be issued share capital of Findel not already owned by Sports Direct.

The Findel board is set to write to shareholders with detailed views on the offer but warned “in the meantime, Findel shareholders are strongly urged to take no action in relation to their Findel shares”.

Ashley’s Sports Direct is the largest shareholder in Findel, increasing its shares earlier this month to take it to 36.8% ownership. The latest offer valued the remaining part of the business at £139 million.

Sports Direct said the offer will initially remain open for acceptance until 9 April and highlighted ways shareholders could accept the offer. The retail group, which also owns House of FraserEvans Cycles, and has an influential shareholding in Debenhams, is eyeing further platforms on which to sell its Sports Direct-licensed goods.

Findel run websites such as Studio.co.uk, Studioretail.co.uk, Ace.co.uk, and Findel-education.co.uk.

Sports Direct also recently bid for the failed restaurant chain Patisserie Valerie, before pulling out due to what it deemed to be an overvaluation of the business, and it also looked to acquire HMV when the music store chain entered administration last year.

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