The many faces of Mike Ashley: Deal maker, drinker, disruptor

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“It’s like he’s playing Pokémon or something – trying to catch ‘em all.”

As far as comparisons go, it’s arguably one of the more flattering that Mike Ashley has received during his colourful career. And as he adds Game Digital to his growing stable of high street brands, few could disagree with that analogy, coined by a source close to his Sports Direct empire.

Ashley’s seemingly scattergun approach to snapping up retail names has already helped him acquire the likes of House of Fraser, Evans Cycles, Sofa.com, Agent Provocateur, USC and Flannels. Add to that sizable stakes in Findel and French Connection, and there are surely few people in UK retail with more power than Ashley.

We speak to some of the people that know Ashley best to get under the skin of what makes the tycoon tick and discover more about his masterplan for his ever-growing retail empire.

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