According to reports in various Dutch media, Pon Holdings sold its 20 percent stake in its big Dutch competitor, Accell Group, at the end of last year. At the time of writing, no official comment was available from either Pon or Accell.
Pon is well-positioned in the bicycle sector with its Pon.Bike division, which offers bikes under the brands Cervélo, Gazelle and Santa Cruz. It is also the parent company of Derby Cycle with its Focus and Kalkhoff brands, among others. After some divestitures, Accell is still the owner of bike brands such as Babboe, Batavus, Ghost, Haibike, Lapierre and Winora.
In 2017, Pon made an offer to raise its stake in Accell from 5 to 20 percent, but its proposal was rejected after months of negotiations. When the complete takeover failed, Pon changed its strategy: At the end of 2018, its multi-millionaaire chairman, Wijnand Pon, quietly acquired a whopping 20 percent block of shares in Accell within ten days. For Accell, the sudden move is said to have come as a surprise.
But it is also a fact that both companies – Pon and Accell – performed extremely well before and during the Corona pandemic, raising their market value. According to a report by Quote, a news platform of the Hearst Netherlands Business and Finance Network, the multi-millionaire sold his package of nearly 1.7 million Accell shares at a profit. More specifically, he acquired his Accell shares at a unit price of around €19 in 2018 and resold them for €26.15 per share.