Country Road bid final: Woolworths

South African group hopes to acquire 100% of target, buying out Solomon Lew.

Retail magnate Solomon Lew looks unlikely to squeeze any extra cash out of South Africa's Woolworths after the group declared its takeover offers for Country Road and David Jones are final.

Woolworths said it will not increase its offer prices of $17 per share for Country Road and $4 per share for David Jones.

The suitor already has an interest in 87.88% of Country Road's shares, with Mr Lew a key minority shareholder.

The South African group lobbed the Country bid after Mr Lew took a minority stake in David Jones, which Woolworths had earlier offered to acquire. 

Speculation is swirling that Mr Lew may have an extra undisclosed holding in David Jones through complicated derivatives positions through Deutsche Bank, which would mean he would be close to being able to block the Woolworths deal.

Woolworths chief executive Ian Moir said he hoped to acquire 100% of both targets, noting "considerable uncertainty around the David Jones transaction over the last few weeks".

"We have put forward a full and fair offer for Country Road and also for David Jones. I hope that shareholders of both companies have the opportunity to take advantage of these offers," Mr Moir said.

"I think everyone needs a clear and timely resolution of this situation."

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