Frasers Group’s Mike Ashley offers £30m to acquire DW Sports

Jessica Paige 17 August 2020 (Last Updated September 7th, 2020 06:38)

Frasers Group owner CEO Mike Ashley has offered over £30m to DW Sports founder Dave Whelan to acquire the sports retailer. 

Frasers Group’s Mike Ashley offers £30m to acquire DW Sports
Should the offer be accepted, DW Sports would join 880 other stores that are part of the Frasers Group. Credit: Hugh Venables.

Frasers Group owner CEO Mike Ashley has offered over £30m to DW Sports founder Dave Whelan to acquire the sports retailer.

This follows DW Sports entering administration earlier this month, leaving more than 1000 employees at risk of losing jobs.

DW Sports administrators, BDO’s Graham Newton and Ryan Grant, are said to be asking for roughly £20m for the business. Rumours indicated that Whelan’s family were looking to buy back DW Sports.

The £30m offer, which was initially reported by The Sunday Times, would comprise the acquisition of all 73 gyms and 75 stores belonging to DW Sports.

Should the offer be accepted, DW Sports would join 880 other stores that are part of the Frasers Group, including SportsDirect.com, Lonsdale, and Sweatshop.

It was reported last week that Ashley is also rumoured to be looking into obtaining 30 Debenhams stores.

Frasers Group value wavers after annual results presentation delayed

Last week, Frasers Group share price dipped after the company delayed its annual results presentation for the second consecutive year.

The presentation was supposed to be held on Thursday 13 August, but the retailer requested an extra week to complete accounts.

In a statement, the company said: “Due to the undoubted scrutiny of our accounts, management and our auditors RSM will take this extra week to robustly review the final accounts and ensure that all necessary disclosures have been completed.”

Experts are wary of what this year’s results could hold for the company. Professor of accounting Prem Sikka, @Premnsikka on Twitter, said: “The release of annual results at Mike Ashley’s Frasers Group – formerly Sports Direct – delayed again. Last year’s delayed results reported a €674m (£605m) tax bill from Belgium and auditors also resigned. What bombshell awaits this year’s delay?”

Following the news of Ashley’s £30m bid, share price for Frasers Group has gained over 2%. It is trading at approximately 290p. This is down by 38% since the beginning of the year, leaving the company currently valued at £1.5bn.