22 September 2004
Not for distribution in the United States, Canada, Australia or Japan.
22 September 2004
ITV sells stake in Thomson SA
ITV has this morning agreed to sell 15.5 million shares in Thomson SA through an
off-exchange block sale before the opening of trading on Euronext Paris.
Citigroup Global Markets Limited and UBS Limited have agreed to purchase
following a competitive process. In accordance with normal market terms, closing
and settlement are expected to take place on 27 September.
In total, the shares constitute approximately 5.5% of the outstanding shares of
Thomson SA. This represents ITV's entire stake in Thomson.
ITV's stake in Thomson originates from Carlton's sale of Technicolor, a
manufacturer and distributor of videocassettes, CDs and DVDs, to Thomson in
2001. In November 2001 Carlton raised finance by issuing an Exchangeable Bond
for €638.6 million, convertible at the option of bond investors into 15.5m
Thomson shares. This bond can be put in January 2005 and matures in 2007. ITV
has entered into bilateral hedging arrangements with Citigroup Global Markets
Limited in respect of the contingent exchange liability associated with the
The book value of the stake is £162 million. The proceeds from the sale will be
primarily used to reduce ITV's debt.
This is the second non-core asset disposal by ITV and follows the sale of
Carlton Books in August 2004.
Commenting, Charles Allen, Chief Executive of ITV said:
'We're delighted to have disposed of our largest non-core asset sooner than
expected at a 5 month high and reduced our borrowings by £172m . This disposal,
together with the recent sale of Carlton Books and the initial bids we've
received for the Moving Picture Company, means that we are well advanced in
disposing of our non-core assets, restructuring our balance sheet and
significantly reducing our debt.'
Brigitte Trafford - Communications Director
James Tibbitts - Director of IR - Company Secretary
Tel 020 7620 1620
Citigate Dewe Rogerson
Jonathan Clare Tel:020 7638 9571
This press release does not constitute an offer to sell, purchase, exchange or
transfer any securities or a solicitation of any such offer in the United States
or any other jurisdiction. Securities may not be offered or sold in the United
States absent registration or an exemption from registration under US Securities
Act of 1933, as amended, (the 'Securities Act'). Neither ITV nor any other
participant in the transactions described herein intends to register any
securities under the Securities Act or with any securities regulatory authority
of any state or other jurisdiction in the United States in connection with the
proposals described in this announcement.
This communication is directed only at persons who (i) are outside the United
Kingdom or (ii) have professional experience in matters relating to investments
or (iii) are persons falling within Article 49(2)(a) to (d) ('high net worth
companies, unincorporated associations etc') of The Financial Services and
Markets Act 2000 (Financial Promotion) Order 2001 (all such persons together
being referred to as 'relevant persons'). This communication must not be acted
on or relied on by persons who are not relevant persons. Any investment or
investment activity to which this communication relates is available only to
relevant persons and will be engaged in only with relevant persons.
This information is provided by RNS
The company news service from the London Stock Exchange