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Will Iceland expand into housewares and electrical goods?

Food retailer Iceland could take a strategic step into non-food when its future becomes clear.

The grocer, in which Icelandic shareholders want to sell their stake, could branch into televisions, toys, lingerie and homeware if potential investors heed a report circulated to them by strategy consultants OC&C.

Iceland founder and chief executive Malcolm Walker has reportedly held talks with Lord Kirkham, the founder of DFS, to provide funding for an offer, according to The Telegraph.

Walker is thought to have capped his own bid at £1.12bn but shareholder Landsbanki is reportedly unlikely to allow a sale at that price because it sees it as too low. Walker has first refusal and the right to match the highest bid to win the auction.

He has already garnered financing from Alberta Investment Managment Corporation and a syndicate of banks, it is understood.

The OC&C report recommends Iceland expands its range to include electricals, video games, homeware and clothing to boost growth.

The report is part of a package of information provided to bidders, including a financial report from accountants Ernst & Young.

Potential bidders reportedly include Bain and BC Partners, Asda and Morrisons.

Source : Alex Lawson – Retail Week
www.retail-week.com/home/grocers-and-supermarkets/iceland-non-food-expansion-recommended/5031635.article

29 November 2011
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