Two potential acquirers of eCommerce giant THG have ended their £2.1bn chase of the Manchester-headquartered company.
Belerion Capital Group and King Street Capital Management offered 170 pence per share for THG, which joined the London Stock Exchange in a headline-grabbing IPO in 2020, around a month ago.
Iain McDonald, a non-executive director of THG, is a co-founder and chief investment officer at Belerion.
THG rejected that bid outright and said it “significantly undervalued the company and its future prospects”.
Meanwhile the company was notified of a separate approach from Candy Ventures, a VC firm controlled by property tycoon Nick Candy, with today identified as the deadline for a formal bid.
A statement to the Stock Exchange this morning read: “After consulting with THG’s major shareholders and taking advice from the company’s advisors, the board has not considered it appropriate to provide due diligence access to any of these parties.
“The board has determined that it is not appropriate to seek an extension to the deadline set out in the company’s announcement dated 19th May.”
News of the approaches on that May date led to a sharp increase of THG’s share price from 116p to 144p; however by yesterday they had dropped back to 104p and this morning have sunk to 90p.
THG’s shares were valued at 625p when it floated in September 2020.
THG’s share price has sunk in the last six months following investor disquiet and criticism from both the media and city over founder Matthew Moulding’s original decision to operate as both CEO and executive chair.
In October 2021 the company announced that it would split the dual roles and initiated an international search for an independent chair, eventually appointing Charles Allen, Lord Allen of Kensington CBE, in March.
Founded in 2004, THG now operates 18 fulfilment sites and 300 localised websites globally across sectors including nutrition and beauty.
It also operates an end-to-end tech platform for clients.