Ashley nets £106m in Sports Direct stake sale

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Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley has bagged £106 million after selling a 2.7 per cent stake in his Sports Direct International empire.

The sale of 16 million shares at 662.5p each, which leaves Ashley holding 61.7 per cent of the sportswear retailer, comes less than a year after he raised £100m by offloading a 4 per cent holding.

Ashley’s latest move was announced the day after Sports Direct, which was recently promoted to the FTSE 100 index, reported a 15.1 per cent surge in sales to £463.7 million for the nine weeks to 29 September.

The chain has been benefiting from the demise of rival JJB Sports and is on track to meet its full-year underlying profit target of £310m, before staff bonus payments.