Germans in for Smoby?

Simba-Dickie is thought to be leading a new group of bidders looking to acquire Smoby, according to reports.
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Smoby has been in receivership again since October, despite its acquisition by MGA.

French press reports say the only “strategic” contender for the company is said to be German firm the Simba-Dickie group. Also thought to be interested are Abcia Holdings which is active in the plastics packaging sector, and private equity group funds, including MIE and Butler Capital. Trade unions claim that jobs will go when the takeover is sealed.

Meanwhile, concerns over shortages have seen Simba-Dickie buy majority stakes in two factories in China.

Chief executive Michael Sieber (pictured) said the newly acquired factories would make more than half the group's products. Out of €370m ($548m) in world sales last year, two thirds were outside Germany.

Sieber said his brands expected to raise prices this year five to 10 per cent and were only growing sales outside of Germany. Domestic German retail sales are in a slump. Other group brands include Eichhorn, Tamiya and BIG.

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