RadioShack sinks as takeover talk wanes

Shares of the electronics retailer tumble as reports surface that a takeover may be off the table.

By TheStreet Staff Jul 20, 2010 1:09PM

By Jeanine Poggi, TheStreetthestreet.com

 

RadioShack (RSH) fell 6.6% to $20.05 today after reports surfaced that at least two private-equity groups are withdrawing their interest in the electronics retailer.

 

Takeover rumors have been circling around RadioShack for months, sending the stock seesawing. Reuters reported on Tuesday that Blackstone Group (BX) and TPG Capital are unlikely to pursue a potential bid for the retailer, citing sources familiar with the matter.

 

Previously, Reuters said Bain Capital had also pulled out of the auction.

 

It was also rumored that rival Best Buy (BBY) expressed interest in purchasing RadioShack, but there have been no updates on the legitimacy of those efforts.

 

"I have never thought that a private equity deal for RadioShack made sense," Wedbush analyst Michael Pachter said via e-mail.

 

RadioShack's core business has been declining for several years, and it is attempting to rebrand itself, focusing on its mobile business. "They have done a phenomenal job in cutting costs, and were way ahead of the curve in exploiting the mobile phone handset sales and activation opportunity as carriers reduced their own retail footprint, but that business faces competition from Best Buy, and it is not certain that RadioShack will maintain its market leadership position," Pachter said.

 

"In order to make sense for private equity, the investors have to believe that the current cash flow is sustainable for a long enough period for them to recoup their investment," he continued. "In my view, they couldn't convince themselves of that, given RadioShack's declining core business and the potential competitive threat posed by Best Buy to its sole growth business."

 

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