Stadium, the leading Swedish sports retailing group, appears set to remain in private hands after Ulf and Bo Eklöf reaffirmed their partnership with Ikano, the holding company of the Kamprad family, which controls Ikea. The Eklöfs, the brothers who established Stadium, sold a stake of 25 percent to Ikano in 2005. Swedish media regularly speculated that Ikano may want to sell its shares as part of a stock market listing, but the Eklöfs let it be known that no such plans were in the cards: They have agreed with the Kamprads that Ikano should hold on to its stake, which has since increased to 27 percent.
The Eklöfs told Swedish newspapers that they preferred private ownership because it enables them to make long-term investments. They added that Stadium had a sound financial structure, and that a stock market listing would cost them time and money. Stadium has about 140 stores across Sweden, Denmark and Finland, and it recently publicized its intention to open a store in Hamburg, for which a location has yet to be found.
In the 12 months ended in August 2012, Stadium's sales before VAT in Sweden grew by 1.5 percent to 3,759 million (€439.0 -$572.7) from SEK3,705 million in the previous financial year. Its sales in other countries went up by 7.3 percent to SEK883 million (€103.1-$134.5) from SEK823 million.