Best Buy Takeover Bid: mindSHIFT Parent BBY Going Private?
Best Buy (NYSE: BBY) founder Richard Schulze has bid to buy the big box retailer and take it private. Regardless of the outcome, it sounds like Best Buy’s leadership remains committed to cloud services, managed services and the growing mindSHIFT division. Here’s why.
Schulze resigned from Best Buy’s board in June, and sent an unsolicited takeover letter to Chairman Hatim Tyabji on August 6. It read in part:
“As you know, since stepping down from the Board on June 7th, I have been actively exploring all available options for my ownership stake. 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 offered $24 to $26 per share in cash, a big premium (36 percent to 47 percent) over Best Buy’s recent trading range on Aug. 3. (You can read Schulze’s complete letter to Best Buy here on MSPmentor.)
Implications for mindSHIFT, Managed Services?
Would a potential Best Buy sale to Schulze change the retailer’s cloud services and managed services strategy? I doubt it. Remember: Schulze was on Best Buy’s board when the retailer acquired mindSHIFT; he signed off on the retailer’s push into SMB IT consulting services. More recently, mindSHIFT acquired White Glove Technologies — arguably the top managed services provider (MSP) in Texas. The mindSHIFT-White Glove negotiations occurred while Schulze was still on Best Buy’s board, MSPmentor believes.
When discussing the White Glove acquisition recently, mindSHIFT CEO Paul Chisholm said the company’s SMB IT services strategy continued to perform well, and that more MSP acquisitions were coming.
Best Buy has been striving to reinvent its struggling business in recent months, launching new store concepts that include help desks (similar to Apple Store Genius Bars). Best Buy also inked an SMB help desk relationship with Verizon. If Schulze successfully acquires Best Buy and takes the company private, I doubt he would “undo” Best Buy’s MSP and cloud services moves. The real question is whether Best Buy’s board will fight Schulze’s takeover offer.