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CEO: Image Open to Offers

9 May, 2006 By: Erik Gruenwedel

The CEO of Chatsworth, Calif.-based Image Entertainment reiterated May 9 that the independent producer-distributor would continue to entertain acquisition offers.

Last year, Image rejected as inadequate an $80 million to $90 million offer from mini-major Lionsgate, the company's second-largest shareholder.

Speaking at the Jeffries Media & Entertainment Conference in Las Vegas, chairman and CEO Martin Greenwald said Image was not going to be acquired at the price Lionsgate offered. He said looking at valuation models he felt there was a price Image could be sold for.

Greenwald said there remained a trio of independent directors on a special committee of the board who “are looking at all the opportunities out there.”

Last month, Image also retained Lazard Freres & Co., a Los Angeles-based investment banker, to review the company's businesses and strategic options, including outlining to the special committee the “best course for the company and all of its stockholders.”

“Looking at the Lionsgate offer, it may be a great offer,” said Greenwald. “But the bidding price didn't define what the company was worth. We feel the library is worth $4 per share. What is the rest of the company worth? We are looking for somebody to step up to the plate.”

He said however long the process takes would only maximize shareholder value.

“The longer it takes, the greater it enhances our value,” Greenwald said.

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