Typography

 

 

Nike, the American sportswear giant, is believed to have sparked a £220 million bid battle for Umbro, the official England football kit maker founded 83 years ago

Nike, the $32 billion American sports-wear giant, is believed to be close to launching a bid for Umbro, the official England football kit maker.

Umbro shares soared 27.5 per cent yesterday, valuing the company at £220 million as it revealed that it had received an approach from an unnamed suitor. Despite fervent speculation of a move by Mike Ashley, the Sports Direct billionaire who has built a 15.04 per cent stake in Umbro over the past two months, sources close to the deal ruled out the tycoon and said Nike was the interested party. Sources insisted that the two sides had been in discussions for some time and details of a preliminary offer could be announced “in days rather than weeks”.

Nike refused to comment and Umbro issued a statement saying: “The board of Umbro confirms that it has received an approach which may or may not lead to an offer being made for the entire issued share capital of Umbro.”

News of the approach came less than 24 hours after Umbro-sponsored England’s chances of qualifying for the Euro 2008 football championships were dealt a serious blow after defeat by Nike-sponsored Russia.

Analysts believe that Umbro’s profits could fall by more than 40 per cent next year if England fail to qualify for the tournament. Last month Umbro issued a profit warning after poor sales of England replica tops, in part fuelled by the dismal form shown by Steve McClaren’s team.

John Stevenson, an analyst at Shore Capital, said the timing of the approach was “surprising” given that a wave of profit downgrades could be coming over the next month. However, Nike has been aggressively expanding into the football market in the past few years and industry sources said a buyout of Umbro, which has a respected heritage in football, would help its aim of dominating the sport.

A takeover by Nike would give the American firm a huge presence in the Premiership, where it already supplies kit to Arsenal and Manchester United, among others. Umbro supplies six Premiership teams, including Birmingham and West Ham. Nike also sponsors leading international teams including Juventus and Barcelona.

Sports Direct had been widely tipped to make an offer for Umbro and banking sources did not rule out a rival bid. However, industry sources said it was unlikely that Sports Direct would challenge Nike’s bid, although Mr Ashley’s stake would give him a strong bargaining position. Sports Direct stocks both Umbro and Nike brands. Mr Ashley will also have made Sports Direct an estimated £6 million in profit on his Umbro shares, which closed up 33p at 153p last night.

 

Comments (0)

There are no comments posted here yet

Leave your comments

Posting comment as a guest. Sign up or login to your account.
Attachments (0 / 3)
Share Your Location
Type the text presented in the image below

LATEST FOOTBALL KITS

Northampton Town 2018-19 Nike Away Kit

Northampton Town 2018-19 Nike Away Kit

The new Northampton Town 18/19 away kit by Nike has been revealed. The new away shirt is made with Nike Dry fabric, designed to help you stay dry and…
Macclesfield Town 2018-19 Macron Away Kit

Macclesfield Town 2018-19 Macron Away Kit

Macclesfield Town revealed their new Macron away kit for the 18/19 season which is a black and grey design. Zaki Artistic Management's logo appears…
Macclesfield Town 2018-19 Macron Home Kit

Macclesfield Town 2018-19 Macron Home Kit

Macclesfield Town revealed their new Macron home kit for the 18/19 season. The home kit is a stylish two-toned blue shirt, together with traditional…
Watford 2018-19 Adidas Away Kit

Watford 2018-19 Adidas Away Kit

Watford's new Adidas away kit for the 18/19 season has been revealed. Adidas is dedicated to creating products in ways that minimise their…
Lincoln City 2018-19 Errea Away Kit

Lincoln City 2018-19 Errea Away Kit

Lincoln City have revealed the brand new away shirt for the 18/19 season, sponsored by APSS. The anthracite grey Errea shirt will be worn by the…
Rovers 2018-19 Macron Home and Away Kits

Bristol Rovers 2018-19 Macron Home and Away Kits

The new Bristol Rovers 18/19 kits have been launched for the upcoming season, with a modern twist on the club's traditional blue and white quarters…
Boca Juniors 18/19 Nike Away Kit

Boca Juniors 18/19 Nike Away Kit

This is the new Boca Juniors 18/19 away football shirt by Nike. Inspired by a seismometer, the away jersey features a navy stripe with Richter…
Boca Juniors 18/19 Nike Home Kit

Boca Juniors 18/19 Nike Home Kit

This is the new Boca Juniors 18/19 home football shirt by Nike. Classic blue and gold colours appear on the home kit, continuing the memorable design…
Club America 2018-19 Nike Home Kit

Club America 2018-19 Nike Home Kit

This is the new Club América 18/19 home football shirt by Nike. The new home kit will be used during the 2018–19 Liga MX season, which is the 72nd…
Club America 2018-19 Nike Away Kit

Club America 2018-19 Nike Away Kit

This is the new Club América 18/19 away football shirt by Nike. The new away kit will be used during the 2018–19 Liga MX season, which is the 72nd…
Bayern Munich 2018-19 Adidas Away Kit

Bayern Munich 2018-19 Adidas Away Kit

The new Bayern Munich home kit for the 18/19 campaign has been revealed. The embroidered FCB crest and the adidas label adorn the front of this ash…
Borussia Dortmund 2018-19 Puma Tournament Kit

Borussia Dortmund 2018-19 Puma Tournament Kit

The new Borussia Dortmund 18/19 Tournament jersey by Puma has been revealed. The BVB Tournament Shirt will be used during the Champions League and…
Hull City 2018-19 Umbro Away Kit

Hull City 2018-19 Umbro Away Kit

Hull City revealed the new away kit by Umbro for the 18/19 season. The dark and moody kit, which features amber on the neckline and cuffs synonymous…
Celtic 2018-19 New Balance Third Kit

Celtic 2018-19 New Balance Third Kit

Celtic’s new 18/19 New Balance away kit has been revealed. Engineered using innovative NB DRY technology, the 3rd Kit SS Jersey wicks moisture away…
Bolton Wanderers 2018-19 Macron Away Kit

Bolton Wanderers 2018-19 Macron Away Kit

Macron and Bolton Wanderers revealed the away kit that the team will wear over the course of the 18/19 season. The kit is fully black with a…
Chelsea 2018-19 Nike Away Kit

Chelsea 2018-19 Nike Away Kit

Nike and Chelsea launched the new away kit for the 18/19 season. The kit brings a return to a yellow colour scheme, made famous through regular…
Napoli 2018-19 Kappa Home Kit

Napoli 2018-19 Kappa Home Kit

In collaboration with SSC Napoli, Kappa’s research and development centre has designed a technical fabric with aggressive and striking imagery…
Norwich City 2018-19 Errea Away Kit

Norwich City 2018-19 Errea Away Kit

Norwich City FC revealed the brand-new Errea 18/19 away kit. The white shirt features modern stripes in the club colours, a nod towards the club's…
Wigan Athletic 2018-19 Puma Away Kit

Wigan Athletic 2018-19 Puma Away Kit

Similarly to their 18/19 home kit, Wigan Athletic's going retro with the 2018/19 Puma Away Kit. A play on the away kit of the 1995-98 era when Dave…
Everton 2018-19 Umbro Away Kit

Everton 2018-19 Umbro Away Kit

Everton FC and Umbro have unveiled the new 2018/19 Everton away kit in a campaign fronted by the Everton Ladies team. The new kit, which will be worn…