Lifestyle brand Ted Baker (TED) caught the market on the hop on Monday by announcing it was formally putting itself up for sale.

Shares in the group, which first reported in mid-March it had received an initial unsolicited approach, jumped 15% to 147p.


Today’s announcement says that after the firm received two cash bids from Sycamore Partners, the first at 130p and the second at 137.5p, it had received more ‘unsolicited third party bid interest.’

While management believes the business is still ‘well positioned to create significant value for shareholders’, after consulting with major investors it has started a formal sale process to see if it can entice potential buyers to put their cards on the table.

‘In view of the interest expressed by potential offerors, and having consulted its major shareholders, the board has decided to conduct an orderly process to establish whether there is a bidder prepared to offer a value that the board considers attractive relative to the standalone prospects of Ted Baker as a listed company.’

The process means the firm can hold confidential talks with several potential buyers at the same time without the need for the interested parties to be identified to each other or the market.


The fashion retailer, which has 560 stores and concessions, is in the midst of a turnaround under new chief executive Rachel Osborne having lost its way somewhat in recent years.

First came a hugging incident, where founder Ray Kelvin was accused of inappropriate behaviour towards staff, followed by a series of profit warnings.

A new chief executive was appointed, but lasted less than a year, and accounting errors were uncovered where the company had overstated the value of its inventory.

The group was also forced to slash selling prices to compete in a heavily discounted market, which eroded profit margins.


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Issue Date: 04 Apr 2022