(Reuters)
(Reuters)

Reliance Brands inks pact to buy Hamleys

  • Reliance Brands signed an agreement to acquire a 100% stake in Hamleys Global Holdings Limited from Hong Kong-based C Banner International
  • Hamleys, founded in London in 1760, is one of the world’s oldest retailers of toys and the ownership has changed hands several times

MUMBAI: Mumbai: Reliance Brands Ltd, a subsidiary of Reliance Industries Ltd, acquired British toy retailer Hamleys for £67.96 million (about 620 crore) in an all-cash deal, the company said on Thursday. Reliance Brands signed an agreement to acquire a 100% stake in Hamleys Global Holdings Ltd from Hong Kong-based C.banner International, Reliance Industries said in a statement. Mint reported on 18 April that Reliance Brands was in advanced talks with C.banner to acquire the toy retailer.

Hamleys, founded in London in 1760, is one of the world’s oldest retailers of toys and has changed hands several times. It was bought in June 2003 by the Baugur Group, an Icelandic investment company. In the same year, Hamleys was delisted from the London stock market by Baugur Group, which had paid $68.8 million for the company. In 2012, it was sold for $78.4 million to France’s Groupe Ludendo. Hamleys reported losses of £12 million in 2017, when it last reported its financials.

Hamleys has 167 stores across 18 countries. In India, Reliance Retail has the master franchise for the brand and operates 88 stores across 29 cities. Darshan Mehta, president and CEO of Reliance Brands, said Thursday, “This worldwide acquisition places Reliance on the frontline of global retail. Personally, it is a long-cherished dream come true."

PTI contributed to this story

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