GORDON LOSES COURT BID TO SCUPPER CBS TAKEOVER OF TEN NETWORK
18 September 2017, Written by Ben Hall
MEDIA mogul Bruce Gordon has lost his court case to try and hold up CBS's takeover of the Ten Network (ASX: TEN) after the NSW Supreme Court ruled the struggling broadcaster's administrators provided creditors with adequate information about a rival bid from Gordon and Lachlan Murdoch.
The court ruled that administrators KordaMentha provided enough information and sufficient reasons for backing the bid by US network CBS and it now casts serious doubt on a renewed joint bid by billionaires Gordon and Murdoch.
Gordon's lawyers had argued KordaMentha's creditors' report was deficient, because it only presented information about the CBS takeover bid, and not the joint bid from himself and Murdoch. Justice Ashley Black ruled there were no deficiencies in the report.
The ruling means a vote on the CBS proposal can go ahead as planned on Tuesday at a second creditors' meeting.
KordaMentha partner Mark Korda says Tuesday's meeting will be crucial with creditors to be given the opportunity to vote on the CBS takeover proposal.
"The creditors can do two things. They can either adjourn the meeting or vote on the CBS proposal," Korda said after the verdict.
"It's up to the creditors, not me."
Gordon, who owns the WIN regional network, and Murdoch submitted a new claim to take over the Ten Network on Friday which they claim will provide more money for unsecured creditors. They delivered a revised late bid to KordaMentha, and offered unsecured creditors up to $55 million compared to $32 million offered by CBS.
After the embattled network was placed in voluntary administration on June 14, Gordon and Murdoch launched a joint bid for control through their respective investment companies, Birketu and Illyria, and it was believed the two industry heavyweights had the inside running on the takeover.
However, the CBS network which is owed $348 million by Ten, announced through the New York Stock Exchange last month that it had entered into a binding agreement to acquire the business and assets of the network.
Gordon was ordered to pay legal costs following his unsuccessful case.
Business News Australia
Author: Ben Hall