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JPM Caz sells Ross's shares worth 75m

STRUGGLING entrepreneur David Ross raised around &pound;75m yesterday through the sale of shares in Carphone Warehouse and Big Yellow Group.<br /><br />Sources said that JP Morgan Cazenove sold the vast majority of Ross&rsquo;s 9.02 per cent shareholding in storage group Big Yellow for around &pound;36m and 2.6 per cent of Carphone Warehouse, which he co-founded with Charles Dunstone, for nearly &pound;39m.<br /><br />But it was not clear whether Ross was selling the shares himself &ndash; either for personal reasons or as part of a refinancing of his commercial property business, Kandahar Real Estate &ndash; or if Cazenove was liquidating positions it held as collateral.<br /><br />Ross was forced to resign from the boards of Carphone, Big Yellow and National Express last December after it was revealed he had used over &pound;200m of shares in the companies as collateral against loans taken out by Kandahar &ndash; without notifying fellow board members.<br /><br />The scandal caused the Financial Services Authority to amend and clarify its rules on director share dealings.<br /><br />Ross recently bought out Morgan Stanley, which had a minority stake in Kandahar, for a nominal sum and is understood to be renegotiating some &pound;247m of loans with Lloyds Banking Group and Royal Bank of Scotland.<br /><br />The company has been hit hard by shrinking property values and is expected to breach its loan-to-value covenants next month when a formal property valuation is carried out.<br /><br />Ross still holds 155m shares in Carphone Warehouse, worth around &pound;250m. <br /><br />Yesterday, Carphone shares fell 1.75 per cent to 168p, while shares in Big Yellow dropped by 7.4 per cent to 313p.