Deadline looms for Best Buy bid from Schulze

A Best Buy store in New York City
A Best Buy store on Aug. 21, 2012, in New York City.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Time is running out for Best Buy founder Richard Schulze to make a bid this month for the struggling retailer.

Schulze has been trying for months to line up investors and lenders to help him buy the company and take it private.

Best Buy agreed to allow Schulze to review the company's holiday financial performance and make a bid this month. But Edward Jones retail analyst Brian Yarbrough doubts that Schulze will make an offer for the company.

"This has been dragging on now since late summer last year," Yarbrough said. "And we just keep hearing, 'A bid is coming, a bid is coming.' And we're just not seeing it. I'd say that the longer this drags on, the less likelihood of a bid. We'd have to wait and see. I'd never say, 'Never.' But I still think it continues to get less likely as the days drag on."

Retail consultant Howard Davidowitz said the late date could mean Schulze has not yet secured the backing of lenders and investors he needs to make a bid.

"If he can't get it, the reason is the deal is illogical," Davidowitz said. "In other words, the company is too weak to support the debt. The deal is illogical and it can't be done."

If he doesn't make an offer this month, Schulze would have other opportunities to bid for the company later.

Best Buy's share price has shot up recently, but it has still lost about a third of its value over the past year, reflecting Wall Street's pessimism about the retailer's future.

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