SYDNEY, June 24 South Africa's Woolworths
Holdings Ltd offered on Tuesday to buy the 12 percent
of Australian clothes retailer Country Road Ltd it does
not already own from billionaire Solomon Lew for A$213 million
The offer potentially ends a stand-off over bigger takeover
target David Jones Ltd. Woolworths wants to buy David
Jones, Australia's No. 2 retailer, for A$2.2 billion but Lew has
amassed a holding of just under 10 percent of David Jones,
potentially enabling him to block the takeover.
The move by Melbourne-based Lew, who has held his minority
stake in Country Road for 17 years, was widely seen as a tactic
to force Woolworths, which owns the rest, to buy out his stake,
currently worth A$172.28 million, at a profit.
($1 = 1.0639 Australian Dollars)
(Reporting By Byron Kaye; Editing by Paul Tait)