Published: Sun, July 16, 2017
Culture | By Antonia Gonzales

Mike Ashley's Sports Direct buys more than a quarter of GAME Digital

Mike Ashley's Sports Direct buys more than a quarter of GAME Digital

Sports Direct is run by controversial figure Mike Ashley who once reportedly drank so much on a team day out that he vomited in the fireplace of a pub.

"Game is aware that Sports Direct has taken significant strategic equity stakes in a number of retail and brand businesses across both the United Kingdom and U.S., and is a leading retailer which partners with major global brands and suppliers", Game said in a statement. Last month Game issued a profit warning after bemoaning current challenging high street trading and the poor stock availability of Nintendo Switch. And presumably those premium loyalty cards aren't exactly flying off the shelves either.

Already back in March it had warned of a challenging market environment and analysts on Thursday said that Sports Direct was likely taking advantage of a discounted price for the shares.

Sky News has learnt that Sports Direct International (Other OTC: SDIPF - news), the chain controlled by Mr Ashley, is understood to have bought the stake in recent days. Game shares jumped 15% on the news before dropping slightly but deal means the company is now worth around £47 million, according to The Guardian. In response to Sports Direct's acquisition the share price went up, and now it's just over 27.5p per share.

Chief Executive Mike Ashley is now embroiled in a court battle with a former colleague, which saw the exposure of the company's operations and Mr Ashley's un-orthdox management style.

GAME shares rose 13% to 27.5p.

The response to this profit warning was another drop in share price value to 20p, which is pretty bleak, considering that when GAME was actually floated on the stock market three years ago it was nearly 200p per share.

The tycoon is thought to see opportunities in Game's presence in the fast-growing e-sports market.

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