Dixons Retail today said it had spent £8m to take full control PIXmania, in a move intended to secure for the future the stability of the platform on which its multichannel business is built.
The acquisition, which is expected to complete today, sees the multichannel electricals retailer, which trades under the PC World, Currys and Dixons.co.uk brands, buy out PIXmania founders Steve and Jean-Emile Rosenblum for €10m cash (around £8m), while taking its stake in the business from 77% to 99%.
Dixons Retail said today that the move would give it “full day-to-day control” of the PIXmania business, on whose e-merchant platform Dixons’ multichannel operations are founded. It comes at a time when, said Dixons Retail, PIXmania’s other operations are facing “significant challenges.” PIXmania, which sells high tech products, reported a loss of £20m in the year to April 28, on turnover of £665m. Dixons said its strategy now was to “take the necessary actions to improve the performance of this strategically important business”.
Sebastian James, chief executive of Dixons, said: "I am pleased that we have been able to acquire substantially the remainder of the PIXmania business. PIXmania is the heart of our very successful UK multichannel business and this will ensure the stability and flexibility to continue to improve the experience for the customers of that business.
“PIXmania's own trading business continues to face strong market headwinds and this move will also allow us to manage the company in line with the group's wider strategy and take the decisive actions necessary to improve its performance."
Dixons bought its existing 77% stake in PIXmania in April 2006 for €266m, then equivalent to £185m. An additional 1% is held by Club Fotovista, representing employees and former employees of PIXmania.