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GAME Digital directors back Sports Direct takeover offer

The takeover offer by Mike Ashley's retail empire, originally announced in June, values the video game retailer at around £52mln

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Sports Direct currently owns 38.49% of GAME

The directors of GAME Digital PLC (LON:GMD) have backed a takeover offer by Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct International PLC (LON:SPD).

In an announcement on Thursday the video game retailer said it “unanimously intended” to support the mandatory cash offer of 30p per share, valuing the firm at nearly £52mln and a 27.4% premium on GAME’s close price on 4 June, the day before the offer was announced.

READ: Sports Direct launches £52mln takeover offer for GAME Digital

GAME shareholders will now have until 1pm on 11 July to accept the offer.

Sports Direct was forced to make a full takeover offer for GAME after taking its stake in the business to 38.49% from 29.9%.

Shareholders that own more than 30% of a company are required to make an offer for the rest of the shares under UK takeover rules.

The move followed the sale of half of GAME’s Belong esports business to Sports Direct in February for £3.2mln.

At the time it made its offer in early June, Sports Direct said it did not believe that GAME was able to “weather the pressures that it is facing" as a standalone business.

The FTSE 250 firm plans to introduce concessions of the chain in its own stores along with Belong-branded gaming “arenas” where people can play computer games.

In early trading on Thursday, GAME’s shares were down 0.2% at 29.8p, just 0.7% below the offer price suggesting investors aren’t expecting a higher bid any time soon.

Meanwhile, shares in Sports Direct were up 0.2% at 266.8p.

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