News Item

28.6.2007Icelandic company Árdegi hf buys Baugur Group shares in Merlin.

In September 2005 a consortium led by Icelandic investment company Árdegi purchased the electronic retail chain Merlin from FDB. The consortium consisted of Árdegi, Milestone Investment Company and Baugur Group. Since the acquisition, the consortium put in place an action plan to turn around the performance of Merlin after years of negative performance . After two successful years into the turnaround, Baugur has decided to sell its stake in Merlin to the consortium.

Sverrir Berg Steinarsson, owner of Árdegi, that operates similar stores in Iceland called BT, believes that now is a good time to take a stronger stake in Merlin and to drive further synergies between the two businesses. “It has been an exciting time since we took over Merlin in 2005. In general we are pleased with the performance of the business and we are optimistic for the future. We see many synergies between Merlin and our operation in Iceland that we intend now to explore further.”

Gunnar S. Sigurdsson, CEO of Baugur Group commented
“We have been happy with our investment in Merlin and the development of the business over the last two years. Ardegi expressed an interest in taking a stronger position in the company and made us an offer that we were happy with. After spending two years building a foundation at Merlin, now is a logical time to explore synergies with other Ardegi companies.”

After the sale, Merlin will be a subsidiary of Ardegi owning 65% of the business and Milestone will l hold the remaining 35% share. There will be no major changes to the ongoing three year turnaround plan for Merlin. – “We started out with a three year detailed plan to turn the business around. We will continue as planned and we look forward to the times ahead, – how can it be otherwise when you have such quality group of employees that are commited on the task at hand”. Sverrir Berg Steinarsson owner of Árdegi added.

Further information:
Sverrir Berg Steinarsson, Árdegi, mobile +354 69 69 000
Sara Lind, Baugur Group, mobile + 354 69 35 505

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