Shop Direct eyes £3bn sale as negotiations begin

The owners of Shop Direct are reportedly seeking a £3bn price tag for the online department store, with potential buyers already lined up.

The online department store, which is owned by the Barclay brothers and operates e-tail stores Very and Littlewoods, has attracted the attention of a number of private equity firms, reports Sky News.

Interested parties, including Advent International, Bain Capital, BC Partners‎ and Cinven are expected to begin talks with the brothers in the coming weeks.

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Investment bank UBS is understood to be leading the sale process and overseeing discussions between the retailer and a number of private equity firms.

According to Sky News, the Barclay brothers, who also own the Telegraph newspaper titles, are keen to secure bids which reflect an enterprise value – Shop Direct’s equity and debt – ‎of well over £3bn.

Shop Direct, which is run by chief executive Alex Baldock, has roughly £1bn of debt, meaning its shares would be worth more than £2bn under the Barclays’ plans.

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