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Douglas Holding in Voluntary Takeover Talks

The company is in discussions with some major shareholders and a financial investor.

BERLIN Douglas Holding AG has confirmed it is in discussions regarding a voluntary takeover offer. 

“Talks are being held between the company, certain major shareholders of the company and a financial investor with respect to the potential acquisition of a substantial participation in the company by way of a voluntary takeover offer,” the company said in a statement on Friday.  It also noted that the matter was discussed during a company supervisory board meeting on Wednesday. 

No further details were available from the Hagen, Germany-based parent company of the Douglas Group, whose activities include Douglas Perfumeries and retailers of jewelry, fashion, confectionery and books.

The confirmation of talks comes on the heels of Monday’s announcement that Douglas’ executive board has been expanded with the additions of Manfred Kroneder, former head of the company’s perfumeries division, and Michael Busch, former director of the books division that has been suffering due to high restructuring costs for its Thalia chain and seen as an unattractive aspect for outside investors. 

Douglas has been the subject of privatization rumors and speculation for most of this year. Reports at the end of August in the German press, for instance, named Advent as a likely investor, causing a leap in Douglas share price as high as 12.9 percent last month.