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Best Buy founder offers $8B to buy company

Richard Schulze at a news conference in Vancouver,

Richard Schulze at a news conference in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 2001. The Best Buy founder said Monday that he wants to take the electronics retailer private by buying up all of its shares he doesn't already own. (Aug. 14, 2001) Credit: AP

MINNEAPOLIS - Best Buy's co-founder is looking to make a buy of his own, offering to take the electronics seller private only months after leaving as the company's chairman.

Best Buy Co. said it would consider the offer but called it "highly conditional." Analysts are skeptical that former chairman Richard Schulze's opening offer of $24 to $26 per share, a premium of 36 percent to 47 percent over the company's Friday closing stock price, would get a deal done.

It's the latest twist in the Minneapolis company's struggles to stay relevant as more people buy electronics online. Over the past year it has announced a major restructuring plan and fired CEO Brian Dunn amid allegations that he had an inappropriate relationship with a female employee.

The offer values the company at as much as $8.84 billion. Schulze already has 20.1 percent of the stock in the company, so paying for the rest of shares would mean coming up with about $6.9 billion.

Schulze resigned as chairman in May, after Dunn's departure. A company investigation found that Schulze knew about the inappropriate relationship and failed to alert the board or human resources.

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