Billabong shares drop 6% on offer withdrawal: Midday roundup

Billabong shares have fallen over 6% this morning to $1.35 after it announced the unnamed company which made a bid earlier this month has now abandoned its offer.

In a statement, Billabong said the company – which is believed to be Bain Capital – had withdrawn the offer.

The proposal was a cash consideration of about $1.45 per share, which values the troubled surfwear business at $694.5 million.

However, Billabong says the original offer from TPG still remains.

“The board of Billabong reiterates there is no guarantee that, following this formal process, a transaction will be agreed or that the board will recommend any proposal,” the group said.

The news is bad news for the retailer, which continues to suffer as chief executive Launa Inman continues to rollout a restructuring plan.

Kathmandu profit falls by 11%

Kathmandu has announced a full-year profit decline of 11%, but said it expects improvement in the year ahead.

The company said it made a profit of $27.9 million in the year to July, with lower profit margins due to a new loyalty program and store refurbishments.

”We will improve company performance by continuing to invest in our store network through opening new stores and relocating or refurbishing existing stores,” chief executive Peter Halkett said in a statement.

Shares flat on weak offshore leads

The Australian sharemarket has fallen lower this morning following weak offshore leads and lower mining stocks, despite good news from the housing market in the US.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 14 points or 0.3% to 4403.7 at 12.00 AEST, while the Australian dollar remained steady at $US1.04.

In the United States, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 13 points or 0.1% to 13,578.

Ten names Russel Howcroft as new general manager

Network Ten has named advertising executive Russel Howcroft as the company’s new executive general manager.

Howcroft is chairman and chief executive of Young & Rubicam Brands Australia, and is best known for being a panellist on ABC-TV’s The Gruen Transfer.

“Russel is a great leader and one of the most outstanding advertising executives in Australia,” chief executive James Warburton said in a statement.

Howcroft will start in February.

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