Event: Reuters is reporting that Best Buy (BBY) founder Richard Schulze and at least four private equity firms are conducting due diligence with respect to a potential acquisition of the struggling electronics retailer. The news comes on the heels of Schulze having negotiated a 60-day window for him to make an offer for the company or face a stand-still period. Schulze had previously said he would like to buy the company for $24 to $26 per share. That represents a significant premium to the current price. Shares of Best Buy are up 3% to $17.49 in early trading today.
Analysis: The market clearly does not believe that Schulze can close on a transaction. While certain hurdles remain, Schulze does have a number of things going for him that might ultimately allow for a deal to be completed. Let’s face it: This guy is persistent, just as any founder of a huge successful company must be. He will not go away quietly. More importantly, with some 20% of the company under his control he is in a unique position to make this deal happen. Never mind that Best Buy may not survive in the long run. That is a worry for after a deal is done. For now, traders should look at this purely on the basis of whether or not Schulze can put the pieces together. Even if a deal fails to transpire, the company is working feverishly on a turnaround that just might work. It would seem to be a risk worth taking.
Action: I would look to own January expiration call options with a strike price approximately the value of Schulze’s bid.
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