THG shares up 25% amid rejected £2bn bid

THG CEO Matthew Moulding

Shares of Manchester-based THG rose 25% to £1.45 on Friday after the e-commerce, beauty and nutrition giant revealed late on Thursday it had rejected a £2.07 billion bid approach pitched at £1.70 per share from London-based Belerion Capital Group Limited and New York-based King Street Capital Management.

Belerion Capital is a small investment firm where THG director Iain McDonald is chief investment officer.

King Street is an alternative asset manager that obversees about $20 billion in assets.

Luxembourg-based Candy Ventures, controlled by property tycoon Nick Candy, also said late on Thursday it was exploring an offer for THG.

The takeover interest reflects a “highly undervalued” stock, Liberum analyst Wayne Brown told Reuters.

Brown said THG’s beauty, nutrition and e-commerce tech businesses could make at least £2 billion in combined sales this year.

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

Both the Belerion-King Street consortium and Candy Ventures must state by June 16 whether they will proceed with an offer for THG or walk away.

THG went public at £5 a share in September 2020 and the stock rose to around £8.

However, THG shares have since fallen to £1.45 — giving the firm a stock market value of about £1.8 billion — following a disastrous presentation to investors last October and concerns over the company’s structure, transparency and governance.