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Briscoe Group Signs Stirling Sports Transaction

Stirling Sports Transaction

Briscoe Group announced today that it had signed a sale and purchase agreement with Stirling Sports Franchises Ltd and Franchise Investments Ltd (in receivership), in relation to becoming the franchisor of the Stirling Sports chain of sporting goods stores.

The agreement is conditional only upon vendor shareholder approvals and upon obtaining commitments from a significant number of the existing Stirling Sports franchises, to enter into a new form of franchise agreement.

The satisfaction (or otherwise) of these conditions is expected to be determined within two months.

Under the terms agreed, the consideration for the transaction will not be disclosed until the sale and purchase agreement becomes unconditional. Briscoe Group will in due course pay cash for the business.

The Stirling Sports chain currently comprises 32 stores located throughout New Zealand and generated approximately $40 million of sales for the year to July 2004. At its peak, the chain had over 50 stores with sales in excess of $50 million.

Rod Duke, Group Managing Director, said that Briscoe Group’s Rebel Sport chain has been a clear leader in the sporting goods market since the late 1990s, and presently generates over $100 million of sales per year from its network of 20 stores.
“We believe we can make significant contributions to the success of the Stirling Sports franchises, by utilising our existing strengths in a variety of areas. These include media arrangements, product sourcing, financial system, property management, human resources and loss prevention. Feedback to date from Stirling Sports franchisees has been constructive. We believe there is a high level of recognition of the potential benefits, and we would expect this to translate into a high level of support for our involvement.”

”The transaction also enables us to make a quantum leap forward in implementing our recently announced franchise network plans, to achieve market coverage beyond the major metropolitan areas. We see this as a significant ‘win/win’ opportunity for Stirling Sports franchisees and Briscoe Group, as well as for all the customers of both chains.”

Mr Duke added that it was Briscoe Group’s intention to maintain Stirling Sports network under its own separate brand. “We see potential for further growth for Stirling Sports in areas that are not already serviced,” he said. “Stirling Sports is well known and fits well as a smaller format partner alongside Rebel Sport in the sporting goods market. In our dealings with the Stirling Sports franchisees we have been impressed with their enthusiasm and loyalty to the brand, and we regard that as a positive for the future.”

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