EM.TV-Kirch deal questioned by bondholders

BONDHOLDERS of EM.TV are concerned about the plan for the company to swap its remaining stake in Formula One holding company SLEC for Kirch's share in Junior TV. The bondholders, who are owed around $180m by EM.TV in convertible bonds are worried that the value of the company is being undermined by the deal and have taken on an American law firm to protect their interests.

The move is likely to delay the switch of the remaining shareholding (about 16.7% of SLEC) from EM.TV to Kirch but has no effect on the overall picture as Kirch remains the majority shareholder in SLEC and the company will continue to be run by Bernie Ecclestone under a shareholders' agreement which runs until the end of 2005.

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