South Africa's Pepkor buys troubled NZ retailer Postie Plus

WELLINGTON, July 18 Fri Jul 18, 2014 12:49am EDT

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WELLINGTON, July 18 (Reuters) - The South Africa-based retail group Pepkor Ltd has bought troubled New Zealand clothing retailer Postie Plus Group Ltd, Postie's administrators said on Friday.

The privately-owned investment group has taken over 64 Postie Plus shops and its head office operation as a going concern for an undisclosed sum.

Postie Plus was put under administration in early June after its bank refused to back the money-losing retail chain, which had been losing market share for the past two years.

"We believe this sale is in the best interests of all creditors and Postie Plus staff," administrator David Bridgman said in a statement.

Pepkor Ltd has clothing and footwear shops throughout southern Africa, eastern Europe, and Australia, where it owns the Best & Less and Harris Scarfe chains.

The listed Postie Plus was suspended from trading on the New Zealand stock exchange at the end of May, when its shares last traded at 7.3 New Zealand cents, valuing the company at NZ$2.9 million ($2.52 million).

It said in April it had bank debt of NZ$12.1 million, with total liabilities of NZ$24.7 million and assets worth NZ$29.6 million.

($1 = 1.1527 New Zealand dollars) (Reporting by Gyles Beckford; Editing by Matt Driskill)

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