Tesco has upped the ante in its bid to gain control of Dobbies by raising its stake in the company as it seeks to win over shareholders.
Days after the OFT granted it clearance to proceed with its offer, the grocery retailer said in a statement today it had exercised an option to buy 16.4% of the Scottish garden centre's shares, taking its stake to 28.1%. Tesco needs 50% to move ahead with the takeover.
The move now places pressure on Tom Hunter who increased his stake in Dobbies to 25.57% in June.
Tesco's statement also re-iterated its position to shareholders by saying that 'the acquisition would provide it with a new source of growth with the longer term potential for Dobbies to grow strongly and increase access to environmentally-friendly products'.