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Best Buy founder offers $8.5bn to buy out company

Following rumors that Best Buy could once again go private and pull out of the public market, the retailer's founder has pitched a bid to bring the company back under his control.
Written by Zack Whittaker, Contributor on

Best Buy founder Richard Schulze resigned as the company's chairman earlier this year following the scandal left behind by former chief executive Brian Dunn's conduct.

But now Schulze is looking for a comeback: he's offered to buy the publicly trading company for $24 to $28 a share.

Schulze will contribute $1 billion himself and the rest could come from private equity firms and financing. The price set is more than a third of the company's closing price on August 3. According to Bloomberg, which first reported the news, the price gives Best Buy a rough equity value of around $8.5 billion.

Naturally, as ZDNet's Rachel King reported, he could've just taken his $1.4 billion stake in the company and ran away arms flailing when he stood down from the retail giant last month.

But he didn't. He did quite the opposite.

"That exploration has reinforced my belief that bold and extensive changes are needed for Best Buy to return to market leadership and has led me to the conclusion that the company’s best chance for renewed success will be to implement these changes under a different ownership structure," Schulze wrote in a letter to Best Buy's board. 

In April, the retailer said it would close 50 U.S. stores only a week after Dunn resigned, marking a painful moment in the company's already tumultuous year.

Late last year, it shuttered its U.K. megastores citing poor consumer uptake. It had planned more than 200 stores across Europe by the end of 2013, but pulled back. 

The world's largest electronics retailer by revenue has a market cap of around $7.30 billion -- up by more than 22 percent, or 4 points in early-morning trading on Monday -- following a dip in shares through July.

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