Sportland – restructuring and sale of majority stake to Sports Direct International

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TGS as the lead counsel advised Sportland International Group on the sale of 60% of the shares to leading UK sports retailer Sports Direct International. Sportland International Group and its owners were advised on ca 30MEUR joint venture, refinancing and restructuring project where London Stock Exchange listed Sports Direct International plc acquired 60% of Sportland.

The firm's advice covered all aspects of the transaction. Actually the project started for our team back in 2009 at the negotiation table with the financing banks of Sportland. A complicated refinancing structure was put in place as a result of these 9 month negotiations with the closing taking place at the end of January 2010. Following that partner Risto Vahimets served as a supervisory board member of Sportland until the Sports Direct transaction and still continues in this role. The work saved one of the leading retailers in the Baltics and cleared the path for brighter future in cooperation with Sports Direct.

Sportland International Group is the operator of the Sportland, Sportland Outlet, Timberland, O’Neill, Nike and Nike Outlet retail chains in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. AS Jalajälg, the official distributor of Nike products in the Baltics, is also part of Sportland International Group.

The UK’s leading sports retailer Sports Direct International operates over 500 stores worldwide. The company owns a large number of sporting brands, and trades predominantly under the SportsDirect.com brand. The company has been a publicly traded company since 2007. Sporting and fashion brands owned include Donnay, Slazenger, Dunlop (in most markets), Everlast, Kangol, Karrimor and Lonsdale.