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Naked Wines completes £95m Majestic Wine disposal

Naked Wines has confirmed it has completed the £95m sale of Majestic Wines to the US-based Fortress Investment Group.

The deal will see Majestic Wine Warehouses Limited and Les Celliers de Calais S.A.S, which together comprise the Majestic retail and commercial business, keep all 190 stores open.

Under its previous owners there had been plans to cut the firm’s store estate down by 140 stores. Majestic also confirmed that former managing director John Colleyhad returned to the business, following his resignation as chief trading officer at Kingfisher in August.

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Following this disposal, Naked said it is now a single brand and pure-play online business that is “well capitalised and wholly focused on realising the attractive growth opportunity ahead”.

When the deal was first announced in August, Majestic Wine said the transactions would represent a “major milestone” in the group’s history, and will help enable the board to “focus on driving growth in the Naked Wines business”.

It added the money will also be used to eliminate the group’s net debt, which stood at approximately £15.5m at end FY19 and is anticipated to be in excess of £30m when the transaction completes and to return £3.8m to shareholders by way of a special dividend of 5.2p per share.

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