Mike Ashley ally Crispin Odey ‘made £30m after shorting Debenhams stock’ before chain’s crash
- Odey previously backed the Sports Direct boss in boardroom disputes
- City sources say he made £30m shorting Debenhams stock before it crashed
- The short is likely to have contributed to Odey’s strong performance
Winner: Crispin Odey who is an ally of tracksuits tycoon Mike Ashley
An ally of tracksuits tycoon Mike Ashley last night emerged as one of the big winners from the demise of Debenhams.
City sources said Crispin Odey, who has previously backed the Sports Direct boss in boardroom disputes, made £30million after shorting Debenhams stock before the chain crashed into administration last week.
Odey, one of the Square Mile’s most daring hedge fund managers, made millions shorting British banks in the run-up to the financial crisis and in subsequent government bail-outs in 2008.
Odey is a shareholder in Ashley’s Sports Direct group with a stake of almost 2.5 per cent.
Ashley spent around £150million of Sports Direct’s funds on a 29.9 per cent stake in Debenhams only to see that lost once it was put into administration.
One source who has been closely following the situation described Ashley’s attempts to take control of Debenhams in the run-up to the collapse as ‘stupid’.
Last year, Odey’s flagship fund emerged as the best performing in Europe with a gain of 53 per cent over 2018.
The short in Debenhams is likely to have contributed to Odey’s strong performance. He declined to comment.