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MarketScreener Homepage  >  Equities  >  London Stock Exchange  >  Debenhams Plc       GB00B126KH97

DEBENHAMS PLC

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Sports Direct chief offers to underwrite Debenhams rescue for CEO job - FT

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04/06/2019 | 06:18pm EDT
FILE PHOTO: Mike Ashley, founder and majority shareholder of sportwear retailer Sports Direct, arrives at the company's AGM, at the company's headquarters in Shirebrook

(Reuters) - Sports Direct chief Mike Ashley has offered to underwrite a 150 million pound rights issue at Debenhams on condition he is named CEO of the British department store chain, the Financial Times reported on Saturday, citing two sources.

The owner of the sportswear firm is also considering a 60 million pounds takeover bid for Debenhams this weekend, the Sunday Times said in a separate report.

A formal offer is being put together by him and would come with conditions, the Sunday Times said, citing an unnamed source.

Debenhams secured 200 million pounds in new funds last week but warned that shareholders still face being wiped out unless it secures financial support from Sports Direct, which holds a near 30 percent stake.

Debenhams said Sports Direct needed to either make a firm offer for the group, underwrite a rights issue of new stock, or provide debt funding if it wanted to prevent Debenhams falling into the hands of its lenders.

In a letter to the Debenhams board dated April 5, Sports Direct said it would be willing to underwrite the group with 150 million pounds in cash if Ashley was named as CEO, the FT said.

Sports Direct was not immediately available for comment and Debenhams declined to comment.

Last year Sports Direct bought department store chain House of Fraser out of administration and it has been trying to wrest control of Debenhams for months to further beef up its presence in the sector.

($1 = 0.7667 pounds)

(Reporting by Rishika Chatterjee and Bhargav Acharya in Bengaluru; Editing by David Holmes and Rosalba O'Brien)

Stocks treated in this article : Debenhams Plc, Sports Direct International

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
JUST GROUP PLC -0.82% 41.34 Delayed Quote.-47.24%
NEXT PLC -1.64% 5868 Delayed Quote.-14.93%
SPORTS DIRECT INTERNATIONAL -2.76% 366.4 Delayed Quote.-17.84%
WILL GROUP, INC. -0.12% 808 End-of-day quote.-35.46%
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Managers
NameTitle
Mark Anthony Gifford Chairman
Nicola Kinnaird Independent Non-Executive Director
David Alexander Robertson Adams Independent Non-Executive Director
Stephen Sunnucks Director
Beatrice Madeleine Lafon Non-Executive Director