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Sports Direct loses bid for Irish chain Elverys

Sports Direct has failed in its bid for Irish sportswear chain Elverys, as the business is set to be bought out of examinership by its management.

The MBO team, led by by Elverys’ current managing director Patrick Rowland, has received new investment through corporate finance house Capnua and Allied Irish Bank. The group is now the preferred bidder, having seen off competition from Sports Direct owner Mike Ashley and US restructuring firm Hilco.

Elverys has been on the market for some months as its owners, John and James Staunton, try to settle debts with Ireland’s National Asset Management Agency.

Court-appointed examiner Simon Coyle of accountancy firm Mazars announced the move yesterday. It is hoped this will secure the future of around 700 employees, working in 56 shops.

The bid now has to be approved by the court before Elverys can officially be bought out of examinership.

Sports Direct chief executive Dave Forsey previously said acquiring the Irish chain would be an “excellent strategic fit” for the company in order to strengthen its foothold in the Irish Republic.   

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