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He takes advantage of market weakness to buy more shares in the business
Thursday 17 Mar 2022 Author: Ian Conway

It’s been an expensive but lucrative couple of weeks for Mike Ashley’s Frasers (FRAS) retail group which has increased its stake in German luxury fashion firm Hugo Boss to 18.2%, taking advantage of recent share price weakness.

The holding, which is made up of a 4.5% direct stake and a 13.7% stake through the sale of put options, has a market value of around €475 million or £390 million.

Shortly after Frasers bought more stock, Hugo Boss forecast earnings before interest and tax would rise between 10% and 25% this year, spurring a sharp rally in its shares.

Ashley said Frasers ‘continues to intend to be a supportive stakeholder and create value’ for both firms through its stake.

As well as its trademark apparel, Hugo Boss sells accessories such as shoes, watches, eyewear and stationery items.

Last month, Frasers bought the operating assets of Studio Group for £26.8 million in cash after the firm called in the administrators.

Frasers was the biggest shareholder in Studio when it was a listed company and Ashley had repeatedly called for a strategic review, described the firm as having ‘buried its head in the sand whilst the world around it changed’.

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