Making an offer without making an offer

This is interesting: Richard Schulze has this morning sent a letter to the board of Best Buy, memorializing an offer to buy the company.

Except it isn't an offer. Call it a non-binding letter of intent, then?

BestbuyNo, not that either, because "neither Best Buy nor I shall be subject to any binding obligation with respect to any transaction unless and until a definitive agreement is executed and delivered."

Schulze writes that he has put a lot of work into his non-offer, and alludes to legal reasons for not being able to be more definitive about what he is proposing:

"Over the last two months, I have done an extensive amount of work to develop a plan to address the company’s challenges, and I have had conversations with several premier private equity firms with deep experience in retail who are interested in a possible acquisition of Best Buy. In addition, I have had discussions with highly-regarded former Best Buy senior executives, including Brad Anderson and Allen Lenzmeier, who have expressed an interest in rejoining Best Buy in this context. As you are aware, Minnesota law requires that I receive permission from the Board of Directors before I reach any agreement with potential partners in this effort. While I have not yet reached any such agreements, I am confident, based on my discussions to date, that I could in short order if the Board allows me to do so."

Except that he goes on to be pretty precise on what he'd pay for the company: "Based on my analysis of publicly available information, and subject to due diligence, I would propose to acquire all of the common stock of Best Buy for a purchase price in the range of $24.00 to $26.00 per share in cash."

Call it a proposal, then. One without the financing lined up, but credible, given the team of bankers and execs pulled together . . . er, lined up ready to be pulled together.

Photo:  Ron Dauphin / Flickr.

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