THG shares surge as bidding war looms

THG’s shares soared by 31% on Friday after the ecommerce group rejected a £2.1bn buyout proposal from two investment firms and attracted interest from property tycoon Nick Candy.

The market value of THG increased by almost £400m to £1.8bn after the business confirmed there had been three takeover approaches in recent weeks.

The company has become a takeover target in recent months after losing over two-thirds of its market value since debuting on the London Stock Exchange in 2020.

Marquee investors such as BlackRock Inc have offloaded their stakes in the company at steep discounts, due to worries about governance and growth.

READ MORE: THG: property mogul Nick Candy mulls over takeover bid

The significant interest reflects a “highly undervalued” stock, said Liberum analyst Wayne Brown, adding the company’s beauty, nutrition and ecommerce tech businesses could make at least £2bn in combined sales this year.

“A bidder could take the company private and look to later relist in the US, where such tech companies receive much greater appreciation from investors,” Brown said.

THG founder and chief executive Matthew Moulding announced last month he had rejected “numerous bids”.

He also prompted speculation of a take-private deal last year by saying he regretted taking the company public.

Moulding holds a special voting share in the company that allows him to veto offers.

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