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Why Superdry's co-founder has ended takeover talks for the troubled retail brand

TheIndustry.fashion
02 April 2024

Superdry Co-founder and CEO Julian Dunkerton will not lead a takeover for the troubled fashion brand, causing shares to tumble by nearly 50% on Tuesday morning.

Earlier this year, the business revealed talks between Dunkerton and US investor suitors over a possible takeover deal.

However, Dunkerton – who is also Superdry’s largest shareholder – has dropped plans for a potential deal.

The boss and the group’s transaction committee said they "concluded that a takeover offer from Julian Dunkerton for the company is unlikely to deliver an outcome for shareholders" amid the work taking place to turnaround the business.

It stressed that he was still talking with the business about other methods of financially supporting the group, including potentially underwriting an equity raise.

Superdry said such a move, which would be "at a very material discount" to its current share price, would provide more financial headroom for its turnaround plan.

Shares have plunged to lows of around 13p per share, in a sign that shareholders were unimpressed by the takeover talks being abandoned.

It is the lowest price since the company began trading on the London Stock Exchange in 2010.

Superdry

In January, the retail business said it was looking at various "cost-saving options" after reports it was considering a major restructuring which could include store closures and job cuts.

The business, which employs around 3,350 workers globally, runs 216 shops alongside franchised stores.

Superdry also recently confirmed that it had agreed an extension and increase to a lending facility from Hilco Capital.

The loan from Hilco would be extended by six months to take it until February 2025 and would allow Superdry to immediately access another £10 million.

A further £10 million would also be available between September and November subject to approval and the implantation of cost-cutting measures.


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