AUGUST 3, 2000
The EM.TV slide goes on
THE downward pressure on the share price of EM.TV & Merchandising AG, the company which owns half of the Formula One group of companies, continued on Thursday and by midday the value of the stock had dipped below 50 Euros for the first time since November. The EM.TV shares, which are traded on Germany's Nieuw Markt, bounced back in the afternoon but still finished 1.5% down at just under 51 Euros. This compares to a high in the Spring of 120 Euros.
Fears that some of EM.TV's big shareholders would sell - leaving the company vulnerable to a hostile takeover - seem to be groundless as most of the trading on Thursday was from small investors. There were no signs of anyone building a stake in EM.TV as, despite the intense activity, the scale of the selling was still small in percentage terms.
The daily battering being taken by the EM.TV stocks must be worrying the venture capitalist firms Hellman & Friedman and Morgan Grenfell Private Equity which sold the F1 stock to EM.TV in exchange for cash and shares in EM.TV.
There have been rumors in recent days that there could be a bid for EM.TV by automobile manufacturers and media companies to gain control of EM.TV's shares in F1 and to its library of children's programming.
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THE EM.TV SLIDE GOES ON