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PPR leaps at chance to buy Puma


PPR leaps at chance to buy Puma


German sportswear company Puma has received a 5,3 billion euros friendly takeover bid from PPR, the French luxury goods firm that owns Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent.

PPR’s chief executive Francois-Henri Pinault has already bought 27.1% of Puma’s shares for 330 euros each. He said that was a firm and final price and if another company, such as Nike, made a counter bid PPR would not offer more.

Puma is the world’s third largest sporting goods company, with 10% of market share, after Germany’s Adidas-Reebok with 34%; US-based Nike is the leader with 38%.

Puma has been the subject of frequent bid speculation, particularly since Adidas’ 2.8 billion euro acquisition of Reebok last year. Puma’s shares surged 10% last week when it was reported a deal was in the works.

Puma’s Jochen Zeitz, who has turned it around since he took over as chief executive in 1993, welcomed the bid and recommended it to shareholders.

PPR said the highly recognisable Puma label will fit with its brand portfolio and it will continue to be an entirely autonomous company within the group.

It added that PPR’s resources would improve Puma’s access to international markets and help expand its high-end product lines and its presence in the US. There would be no cost cuts and no staffing changes. PPR is hoping to close the deal in early July.

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