Consulting » Market (but not Marks) nutty for Knutsford

Market (but not Marks) nutty for Knutsford

The Archie Norman connection has seen Knutsford's shares go from under 10p a week ago to an intraday high of 252.5p. It seems our comment yesterday about buying Marks & Spencer isn't half as crazy as the people buying the shares.

The national media has had a field day with Knutsford, the little leather company in Manchester that was subject to a reverse takeover by Maybeat (that is, Archie Norman, Julian Richer, Nick Leslau and Nigel Wray). The fact that these four, admittedly very smart, businessmen plan to use the company to buy up underperforming property and retail groups had the markets in a real tizzy, pushing the intraday value of the firm to £700m. The nationals slated the whole frenzy as “bubble mania”.Well, it all calmed down to sub-Internet flotation status by the end of play; but with Thursday’s trading again pushing the shares to the dizzy heights of 225p (for shame – the £5m-asset company is only worth £624m today), you have to wonder whether anyone’s actually reading the City Comment pages anymore.But since we’re in Wonderland, let’s just toss out a number you might want to watch for: Knutsford will have the same market capitalisation as Marks and Spencer as soon as the shares hit £28.50. Anyone for a call option?

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