Best Buy takes 50pc in Carphone


The Carphone Warehouse has sold a 50 per cent stake of its retail business to US electronics retailer Best Buy.

The acquisition is worth up to £1.1 billion in cash for Carphone’s retail, web, direct business, insurance operations and its airtime reselling business. This includes all
2,400 Carphone stores but the deal does not include its fixed line service Talk Talk, AOL Broadband, Opal and its share in Virgin Mobile France has also been excluded.

The cash injection will be used by Carphone to pay off existing debts, invest in its telecoms network and expansion.

The joint venture between the two companies will see a move into Europe bringing the Best Buy brand into the continent from 2009. The American company also aims to use Carphone’s expertise in mobile phone retailing to expand its own range of Best Buy Mobile stores.

The new venture will be overseen by a board consisting of executives from both Best Buy and Carphone, which will include Carphone Warehouse CEO Charles Dunstone.