Ten denies leak is behind new share price plunge

Ten has suggested that a continuing selldown by shareholder Lazard Asset Management is behind a fall in the company’s value on the ASX to a new low of 16c today.

The statement from Ten came after the ASX asked it to explain the decline in its share price and whether there was any new information that needed to be made public under its disclosure rules. In the note, the ASX stated: “The recent trading in Ten’s securities would suggest to ASX such information may have ceased to be confidential”.

The Australian Financial Review reported this morning that Ten’s board met yesterday to discuss the broadcaster’s ongoing financial woes. But the board has issued no new information since then about whether it is any closer to addressing the end of year deadline to repay its $200m CommBank loan facility.

Since the start of the week, the company’s share price has declined by a further 28%, including a fall of around 6% so far today.

How Ten’s share price on the ASX has fallen since Monday | Source: Google Finance

The entire company now has a market capitalisation below $60m, barely a tenth of its value a year ago.

A string of external specialists are now involved in attempting to rescue the broadcaster.

According to the AFR, they now include management consultants McKinsey who have put together a cost-cutting plan; Gilbert + Tobin who are providing legal advice; KordaMentha who are restructuring advisers; investment bank Citi; PPB Advisory who may be appointed receivers by CommBank; Fort Street Advisers who are working for loan guarantors and shareholders Lachlan Murdoch, Bruce Gordon and James Packer; and financial advisers Moelis & Co.

The newspaper also reports that Packer is attempting so sell his 7.7% stake in the company.

In its statement to the market, Ten answered a simple “no” to the question of whether it knew of any unannounced information it should disclose.

It added: “Ten is aware, based on notifications made to ASX in May 2017, that Lazard Asset Management Pacific Co and its associates have been selling Ten’s securities”.

The letter to Ten from the ASX


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