The rumour on the ether is that Newegg.com is looking into buying Dabs.com and an announcement could be made as early as next week.
The figure involved is suggested to be around £10 million.
We had heard that Tesco were interested in a similar deal, to purchase Dabs, but that Tesco seemed not interested in Dabs business interests in France, which is alleged to have not been performing to expectations and may have been putting financial strains on Dabs UK operations.
More on this HEXUS.bean as the pan sizzles…
UPDATE - 15:44 hrs, 16th January 2006
Today HEXUS recived the following offcial statement from Dabs.com:
"Dabs was surprised to hear of our recent story connecting us with Newegg and can deny that any discussions have taken place with them with regards to any strategic acquisition or merger.
More surprising was that our UK Operations was struggling to support our ‘poorly’ performing French Operations.
Dabs acquired SOS Developers in January 2003 as a foothold into the European market and whilst the first 18months were spent integrating and learning the market, we have steady and continually profitable growth. Q4 2005 saw some excellent growth figures with December growing in excess of 20%. Our French b2c online business dabs.fr whilst having taken a back seat to our French b2b Operations over the last 12 months is about to relaunch with a new site platform and renewed investment in the marketplace.
Dabs has seen what has always been a tough IT market become even more competitive in 2005 and it is a comforting factor and a credit to all our team in the UK and France that our accounts will show continuing profits and healthy revenues when we post shortly for 2004/5 year (1/4/04>31/3/05)"
During a telephone call with our Paul Dutton, Jonathan was even somewhat more assertive in refuting our story, and he stated that Dabs had never even spoken to Newegg.com and that, like HEXUS, he had also heard rumours regarding the possibility of a take-over by Tescos, which Jonathan also refuted.
And perhaps that's the real story here... who's out in the channel planting the beans?... and why?...
However, apparently, it's true that some five years ago, David Atherton, the founder and now Chairman of dabs.com plc made a public statement to the effect that he wouldn't rule out an acquisition of Dabs being made in the foreseeable future... but whether that near future was in a month, a year or five years wasn't clear...
Dabs.com plc is believed to have a turnover of £170 million here in the UK, and a further £20 million overseas.