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More speculation about Mamut HMV bid

By | Published on Wednesday 23 March 2011


There has been more speculation that Russian businessman Alexander Mamut is preparing a bid for the whole HMV group. As previously reported, Mamut currently owns 6% of the entertainment retailer, and recently hired the services of Credit Suisse to advise him on the future prospects and options for the company.

Recent rumour has been that Mamut wants to buy Waterstones, and with HMV top man Simon Fox – busy trying to placate his bankers as his company gets ready to breach covenants on its loans – reportedly proposing a sale of the book chain to raise quick cash, many think the Russian may get that wish.

However, some still think Mamut may bid for the whole of HMV, and the FT has pointed out that the businessman may soon have access to the funds he’d need to stage such a bid because Euroset, the Russian mobile phone seller in which he has a 50% stake, is about to float on the London Stock Exchange.

Although Mamut is expected to keep hold of some of his Euroset stock, the profits from that flotation would more than cover the costs of buying HMV outright.

The new rumours have resulted in HMV’s share price, which has been buoyant of late after a long period of decline, to push up another 7% yesterday.