Briscoe Group takes a stake in troubled Kathmandu

  • News
  • June 30, 2015
  • Elly Strang
Briscoe Group takes a stake in troubled Kathmandu

Briscoe Group says it accumulated 4.9 percent in shares over time and secured a further 14.9 percent from shareholders at $1.80 per share.

The NBR has reported that the number of shares bought at $1.80 would value Kathmandu's equity at $363 million.

Briscoe Group announced the purchase this morning, which is said to have come as a surprise to Kathmandu.

Kathmandu said in a statement it hadn’t had any contact with Briscoe Group.

A spokesperson for Kathmandu had no further information to give when contacted.

It has been previously speculated that Briscoe Group may step in and take control of Pumpkin Patch, another struggling retailer.

Pumpkin Patch abandoned its search for a buyer this month, and lost its CEO Di Humphries days later.

Briscoe Group managing director Rod Duke has a seat on Pumpkin Patch’s board and owns about 10 percent of the kids’ clothing chain.

Instead, he has gone after Kathmandu. The struggling outdoor company posted a $1.8 million loss in the six months ending January 31.

The loss was attributed to aggressive Christmas discounting and poor trading in January.

The company’s then acting CEO Mark Todd vowed to change Kathmandu’s promotional activity and scale back its new store openings this year to recover.

In contrast, Briscoes is in good health, and made a record profit of $39.3 million after tax in the year ending January 25.

Duke said in a statement he was excited by the prospect of bringing Briscoes, Rebel Sport and Kathmandu together.

“I am excited by the potential that would arise from bringing together these two iconic retailers – we each have strong and recognisable brands that I see as complementary,” Duke said. 

The takeover is imminent and will comprise of both cash and scrip to Kathmandu shareholders.

Kathmandu has already seen a spike in the value of its shares.

Yesterday (29/06) they sat $1.39 and today (30/06) they have jumped to just over $1.70.

This isn’t as good as it’s been in the past, as Kathmandu was trading at $3.20 just last year.

Briscoe Group’s shares have risen 2.8 percent to $2.93.

Briscoe Group did not want to comment further on the purchase.

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