Solomon Lew takes stake in David Jones


David JonesBillionaire Premier Investments chairman Solomon Lew has taken a small stake in David Jones, potentially complicating a takeover deal for the department store chain.

Earlier this month Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board gave the go ahead for South African retailer Woolworths Holdings’ $2.15 billion takeover of David Jones.

Shareholders will vote on the takeover offer in June.

But on Friday David Jones issued a statement saying S L Nominees now has an interest in 3.5 million David Jones shares which equates to 0.65 per cent of the company’s issued share capital.

It is unknown when Lew, a director of S L Nominees, purchased the shares.

Lew also has an 11 per cent minority stake in Country Road which is controlled by Woolworths Holdings of South Africa.

David Jones recently delivered its best quarterly sales figures in four years, with sales lifting 4.1 per cent during the three months to April 26, trouncing arch rival Myer which suffered a one per cent slide during the same period.

Meanwhile, Premier Investments CEO and ex David Jones boss Mark McInnes recently said potential international clothing competitors would have trouble getting the right products for the Australian market.

Premier Investments’ businesses include Just Jeans, Portmans, sleep wear business Peter Alexander, stationery retailer Smiggle and clothing stores Dotti, Jay Jays and Jacqui E.


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