Iceland founder Sir Malcolm Walker says he has no plans to sell and has rebuffed several potential buyers. 

Walker has reasserted his vow to maintain control of the discount frozen foods retailer, despite approaches from several potential buyers since the beginning of the pandemic, The Sunday Telegraph reported.

According to The Sunday Telegraph, Walker has seen “frequent approaches” for the chain and opportunistic investors buying its debt at a discounted rate.

Investors are understood to have bought the supermarket’s high-yield bonds for as little as 67p in the pound earlier this year, a strategy that is often used by investors intending to position themselves for a debt-for-equity swap, which may allow them to take control of a business if borrowing further was to become unaffordable. 

Walker and Tarsem Dhaliwal, co-owner of Iceland, told The Telegraph: “Our 2025 bonds are trading in the mid-80s, which is positive given the current economic climate. The maturity is over two years away, we are paying a very low fixed interest rate, and when the time comes we are supremely confident of our refinancing plans.”

Walker also asserted that only “a very small proportion” of its suppliers had credit insurance. 

The frozen food specialist trades from more than 1,000 Iceland and The Food Warehouse fascias across the UK.

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