French Connection shareholders agree to £29 million takeover
French Connection shareholders have accepted a £29 million takeover bid from its second-largest shareholder, taking the company private for the first time since 1983.
The fashion retailer said it had negotiated a deal with Apinder Singh Ghura, who already owns around 25.4% of the business after he bought the holding from Sports Direct's Mike Ashley in February.
The Newcastle-based businessman will buy the company through MIP Holdings, which he controls alongside Amarjit Singh Grewal and KJR Brothers Limited. The consortium has offered £0.30 ($0.41) in cash for each of the fashion retailer’s scheme shares if the deal, which requires final court approval, becomes effective.
French Connection chief executive, Stephen Marks, who co-founded the chain in 1972 and remains the company's largest shareholder with a 41.5% stake, is set to receive about £12 million for his stake in the retailer. Marks announced that he will step down from his role once the deal is completed.
The consortium face a battle to revive the brand, which was once highly sought after with its infamous FCUK branding that launched in the 1990's.