Lakefield may get given H Young plc on a plate

After the Madison/Leeda MBO was voted down by shareholders at an EGM last week, Lakefield’s hostile 77p bid for the plc is the only one in the frame. Tomorrow is Lakefield’s offer deadline…
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Lakefield Holdings Ltd is an investment vehicle run by Dr Samann aka ‘Mr Magic Tree’, the car air-freshener distributed by Saxon Industries, one of H Young’s other companies.

Dr Sauman did not want Madison or Leeda to be split from the group, as they are the most profitable bits.

However, directors of H Young plc believe the sale to the Madison management team would be a good thing, especially at this time.

In a letter to shareholders the directors said:

“[We] believe that Madison and Leeda are being sold at an excellent price, particularly taking into account the small proportion of owned brands held within these divisions, the shift in bicycle distribution towards powerful national retailers and the significant adverse effect of the foot and mouth crisis on outdoor sports such as cycling and fishing.

“The Independent Directors consider the disposal of Madison and Leeda to be in the best interests of the Company and Shareholders as a whole.”

The MBO would have wiped out H Young’s debt, leaving the group free to concentrate on growing such divisions as Animal, which the H Young directors believe has a strong potential for meteoric growth.

Edwina Johnston, H Young’s finance director, told bikebiz.co.uk that Good Friday is when Lakefield’s level of acceptance closes.

“That will dictate where we go from here,” she said.

The number of shareholders who have accepted Lakefield’s bid will be revealed on Tuesday.

Terry Bowles, Madison’s chief executive, will not be available for comment until Tuesday.


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