Strong Christmas sales will encourage potential investors

Strong Christmas sales will encourage potential investors

Matalan’s strong sales performance over Christmas has boosted the prospects of selling the UK-based value retailer, according to City analysts.

Commentators had suggested that potential buyers had been reluctant to meet the reported GBP1.5bn (US$2.4bn) asking price for the company late last year, but recent sales increases may have breathed new life into the process, they say.

Matalan, which went into private ownership for GBP817m in 2006, posted like-for-like sales up 9.3% for the 13 weeks to 2 January – and up 13.7% in the five weeks to the same date.

Potential bidders for the company include a host of private equity groups, including Advent International, CVC and TPG, according to reports.

Matalan declined to comment on the speculation surrounding the sale process when contacted by just-style today (15 January).