B&M Value sinks as boss Simon Arora joins JD’s Cowgill is shifting shares

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SSA Investments, the family office of B&M CEO Simon Arora, sold 40 million shares in B&M overnight for a price of 585p – a 1.8% discount on Thursday’s closing price

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Hawkwaves moved into retail today after the CEO of B&M Value Retail cashed in on a significant portion of his stock in all these days.

SSA Investments, the family office of B&M CEO Simon Arora, sold 40 million shares in B&M overnight for a price of 585p — a 1.8% discount on Thursday’s closing price.

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The SSA manages the assets of Aurora and her brothers Bobby and Robin. Simon and Bobby bought the discounting chain in 2004 and helped transform it from a struggling regional brand to retail Goliath. The pair, and brother Robin, who sit on the board, have an estimated net worth of £2.5 billion.

The overnight share sale, conducted by Goldman Sachs, raised £234 million for the brothers. This share represents 4% of the company’s outstanding stock and leaves Arora with a 7% B&M.

A spokesperson declined to comment on the reason for the sale.

Nick Babb, an independent retail analyst, said: “Investors who last held shares in B&M by SSA Investments, the Aurora family investment vehicle a year ago – 40 million shares at 545p – fared well as shares Closed at c597p last night, but, considering the recent turn in sentiment against retailers, many must have groaned overnight at the news that the Arora family is looking to sell another 40 million shares.”

The stock fell 19.2p, or 3.2%, to 577.4p today, leaving it near FTSE 100 lows.

B&M is the second major retailer to have seen a top executive cash out in as many days. JD Sports executive chairman Peter Cowgill stunned the market on Thursday afternoon as he halved his stake. Cowgill raised just over £200 million by selling 10 million shares. The move sent JD’s stock down 7% yesterday, though it recovered to 2.75p this morning to 200.7p.

The sale will leave many investors wondering if it can top most after Christmas. Retailers, including both JD and B&M, have given several benefit upgrades over the past fortnight. The sector faces more uncertainties in 2022 as rising energy costs squeeze household finances.

The fall in retail stocks over the past two days has driven the value of the UK-listed sector by £1.6bn, which most see as profit-taking.

With its focus on the discount end of the market, B&M is likely to be the best performer at any cost of living.

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