Sports Direct tycoon Mike Ashley has sold his stake in etailer MySale.
Ashley has offloaded his 4.8% holding for about £518,000 – substantially less than he paid for it when he invested alongside Arcadia tycoon Sir Philip Green.
The loss on the investment came in the wake of Sports Direct’s wipe-out, along with other equity investors, when control of department store group Debenhams passed to lenders following an administration process.
The disposal follows MySale’s offloading of its Cocosa business in the UK to Brand Alley, leaving it focused on Australia and New Zealand.
It also came in the wake of Sports Direct’s £120m sale and leaseback of property at its Shirebrook head office, which will be used for working capital.
A Sports Direct spokesperson said of the MySale stake sale: “The investment no longer had the same strategic value it once did, particularly after they withdrew from the UK.”
Analyst Nick Bubb said: “It [Sports Direct] surely can’t need the money so the assumption must be that it has lost faith with the business model, despite having a joint venture with MySale to clear seasonal stock Down Under.
“On that basis, no doubt the beleaguered Philip Green would like to be out of his ill-fated MySale shareholding as well, but he clearly has much bigger problems on his mind, as he fights to avoid the collapse of his Arcadia fashion empire.”