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China's JD.com swings away from deal for Britain's Currys

A guy rides a scooter past a JD.com poster for the "618" shopping festival in a retail area in Beijing, China June 14, 2022

LONDON, March 15 (mod1s) - China-based online retailer JD.com (9618.HK), opens new tab said on Friday it will not make a bid for British electricals business Currys (CURY.L), opens new tab, days after U.S. investor Elliott Advisors pulled away.
 
Shares in Currys, which plunged to a session low following the report, were down 5% at 56.3 pence at 1425 GMT.
 
JD.com, which was keen on Currys' shop and warehouse network to help it grow in the UK and Europe and offset poor demand in China, had announced on Feb. 19 it was studying a prospective bid.

However, it declared on Friday that "following careful consideration", it did not plan to submit an offer. Currys had no quick reaction.
 
Elliott Advisors said on Monday it wouldn't be making a definitive bid for Currys either, having had offers of 62 pence a share and subsequently 67 pence a share rejected.
 
The shares ended Thursday at 58.9 pence, giving Currys a market value of 670 million pounds.
 
Analysts at Peel Hunt had indicated it would require an offer of over 80 pence per share for Currys' board to engage.

While Currys, which sells fridges, washing machines, laptops and other consumer electricals in Britain, Ireland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland, has struggled to expand over the previous two years owing to the strain on consumer finances, the business has claimed its prospects remain bright.
 
In January it anticipated yearly earnings ahead of market estimates as it benefitted from increased customer confidence and a stronger performance in its Nordics sector.

Earlier this month, it stated a plan to sell its Greek operation will conclude in April, providing it net cash proceeds of 156 million pounds which it would use to reduce debt.
 
The number of unsuccessful takeovers of UK-listed businesses has more than quadrupled in recent years as boards have refused a wave of proposals they feel are taking advantage of cheapened stock prices.

Source: https://www.reuters.com/

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