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HRG buyout rumours come to nothing

Published: 7 April 2011
City speculation about a possible buyout of Homebase parent Home Retail Group has been rife this week.
The rumours were prompted by the news, carried in The Telegraph earlier this week, that US private equity firm Madison Dearborn Partners had acquired a 4% stake in the business. When this was increased to 4.25% on Tuesday many took the view that the firm, a leveraged buyout specialist, was preparing to launch a takeover bid. And Home Retail Group shares increased on the back of the rumours.

However, The Independent has scotched the rumours this morning, pointing out that it is not Madison Dearborn that holds the stake in the company. In fact the shares are owned by a mutual fund called Tradewinds. Tradewinds has affiliations with Madison Dearborn, hence the latter's appearance on Tuesday's regulatory news statement, but, says The Independent, the key difference is that Tradewinds does not do buyouts.

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