ASOS shares jump on report of U.S. stake interest

LONDON Wed Aug 27, 2014 6:50am EDT

LONDON Aug 27 (Reuters) - Shares in British online fashion retailer ASOS, which have fallen sharply in recent months after profit warnings and a warehouse fire, jumped on Wednesday on an unconfirmed report of a U.S. bid for a stake in the business.

ASOS shares, a previous market darling which have fallen by almost two-thirds this year, surged 13.5 percent to 2,665 pence.

British financial website This Is Money said there was "vague talk" of a U.S. cash bid in the region of 50 pounds ($83) a share, adding a U.S. buyer was believed to have approached 27.4 percent shareholder Bestseller, a Danish fashion firm that also holds a stake in German rival Zalando.

Among the firms the website said were interested were e-commerce giants eBay and Amazon.

ASOS was not immediately available to comment.

ASOS shares fell sharply in June after a fire at the firm's Barnsley distribution centre in northern England, just two weeks after the company warned its full-year profits would miss forecasts by 30 percent.

ASOS had already spooked investors in March when it announced plans to spend on infrastructure to meet future demand, at the expense of short-term profits.

($1 = 0.6033 British Pounds) (Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta and Francesco Canepa; Writing by Emma Thomasson; Editing by Pravin Char)

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