Carphone Warehouse might buy Best Buy’s stake in European JV

The Phone House, Paris

UK mobile phones retailer Carphone Warehouse Group Plc (LON:CPW) will mull over the possibility of buying the 50% stake of US consumer electronics retailer Best Buy Co Inc (NYSE:BBY) in their European joint venture CPW Europe, chief executive Roger Taylor told Reuters today.

The company has the option, under the joint venture deal, to take possession of the US firm’s stake in case of a change in ownership at Best Buy. It said it would explore such an opportunity should Best Buy founder Richard Schulze’d bid for the US firm succeed as expected in December. Taylor said that his company would be able to fund a possible transaction for the JV stake, having in mind its current position.

According to knowledgeable sources cited by Reuters, a bid by Schulze for Best Buy would be in the USD8bn (EUR6.3bn) range, as initially offered.

Carphone reported a 30% rise in its pretax profit to GBP8.6m (USD13.6m/EUR10.7m) for the first half of its fiscal year and a 1.6% increase rise in underlying sales at its European business.

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