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Latest Satellite News Discussion, Thomson becomes Technicolor at General Satellite News forum; Written by Chris Forrester Thursday, 28 January 2010 10:01 Troubled French technology company Thomson is to completely restructure, dropping its ...

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Thomson becomes Technicolor - 28-January-2010, 20:12

Written by Chris Forrester
Thursday, 28 January 2010 10:01

Troubled French technology company Thomson is to completely restructure, dropping its name and attempt to hang onto its various business divisions.
Highly indebted Thomson has struggled these past few years, and the market has been full of rumour that this or that division would be sold off. And the divisions are undoubtedly valuable: high-end video division Grass Valley is one.
Instead of a sell-off, French shareholders Jan 27 approved a restructuring plan. Out goes the hallowed Thomson name, tarnished by the French version of Chapter 11 as it is, and in its place another highly-regarded brand, Technicolor.
Financially, Thomson/Technicolor will have to have a €348m capital increase, a debt for equity swap and a bond buy-back. The end result will be a 45% reduction of the group’s overall debt, to a not-insignificant €2.84bn. In other words there are still anxieties ahead, and to help to further reduce this debt the company is still seeking buyers for its Grass Valley camera operation, Screenvision division and certain other subsidiaries.
"We are delighted that shareholders have given their full backing to our restructuring plan," Chairman and CEO Frederic Rose said in a statement. "This is a new start for our Group under the Technicolor brand," Rose added. Shareholders also agreed to separate the roles of chairman and CEO under a new governance structure. The position had been combined in 2009 at the height of the company's difficulties.
Technicolor announced yesterday that it had sold off its Convergent Media Systems division to Sony. CMS specialises in digital signage, and has 150 staff in the US.
   
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