It's been a rough couple of months for the media giant.
First, CC declares a $4.7 Billion loss for Q4 of 2004 (yes, that says Billion and Quarter).
Then, an independent motocross promoter in Chicago wins a $90 Million judgement against CC for tortious interference, the first-ever successful litigation of its kind against the company.
The judge in the case is now considering ordering that $90 Million bonded before CC runs to the protection of the bankruptcy courts...
Last week, CC announced it was "spinning off" (i.e. cutting loose) its radio and concert promotions operations, finally confirming that the company's main reason for existing, that mythical "synergy" between its media holdings, has finally proven a bust.
Now, their second-largest investor is dumping CCU like there's no manana....
Below the fold...
Clear Channel Communications announces the spinoff of Clear Channel Entertainment in the wake of CCC's announcement of a $4.7 Billion loss for Q4 of 2004 and continued losses in their radio holdings.. Their radio stations are tanking and their concert promotions business is struggling - this is a necessary but highly embarassing outcome for all those investors who bought Clear Channel's line about "synergy" between their radio, advertising and concert promotions holdings..
But wait, hold the phone .. looks like Clear Channel Entertainment is in hot water as well .. fresh off a $90 Million judgement against them for tortious interference with a Chicago promoter, the promoter has now asked the judge to order the $90M secured for fear of Clear Channel's insolvency and inability to pay..
Ready... set ... go!
By Brian C. Anderson, Los Angeles Times.
Chicago Tribune April 20, 2005
The liberal Air America Radio, just past its first birthday, has probably enjoyed more free publicity than any enterprise in recent history. But don't believe the hype: Air America's left-wing answer to conservative talk radio is failing, just as previous efforts to find liberal Rush Limbaughs have failed.
In a court case that has dragged on 3 years, the jury in a U.S. District Court has found against Clear Channel Entertainment, awarding $90 MILLION in damages to Chicago promoter Jam Productions.
This is the first antitrust lawsuit to have been successfully fought against Clear Channel.
the Chicago Tribune has an excellent summary of the details.
Try forwarding this on to your local France-hating wingnuts...
Apparently, Clear Channel Entertainment's master plan to justify its $4.5BN investment in SFX and reinvigorate its presenting operations involves the use of Jedi Mind Tricks, and to NOT TELL ANYONE "this concert has been brought to you by Clear Channel Entertainment"
That, and you can now bring your own blanket.
The Wall Street Journal
"..the company hopes it has found a turnaround artist in Michael Rapino.. . Rapino is trying to push through some bold moves aimed at reversing some of Clear Channel's early stumbles in the concert business.
Some of the moves are small, such as allowing concertgoers to bring in their own blankets. But others are more significant, like ditching the Clear Channel brand in promoting local concerts, to avoid tainting the event with a corporate name that has gained negative connotations in the minds of many music lovers.."
Last year, Clear Channel took aim at Boston's historic Wang Center, a theatre and non-profit arts organization with deep roots in the Boston community, and kicked them right where it hurt most - that delicate "double bottom line" that all nonprofits must walk like a tightrope.
Cue Philadelphia, 2005. Clear Channel already owns and/or runs game on most of the major theatres in the market, but of course, it's not enough!
They already own the rock and pop scene, off-broadway and urban theater, 6 of the largest radio stations and 220 billboards in this market. Now, they want to strip away the last revenue-driving ventures by the Kimmel Center, a non-profit Performing Arts presenter that is also the umbrella organization for such cultural gems as The Philadelphia Orchestra, the Philadelphia Ballet, Opera and the world-reknown PHILADANCO dance company.
Just days ago, Clear Channel admitted to being subpeonaed in Eliot Spitzer's ongoing payola investigation.
As part of a Friday afternoon info dump, Clear Channel dumped all over its investors by admitting to a staggering $4.7 Billion loss for the quarter.
Yes, quarter, not year.
Apparently the bulk of the loss had to do with changes in accounting rules, and no longer being able to artificially inflate the value of intangible assets.
And in terms of their real assets, the outlook is not so good either ... more on the flip-flop!
by Paul Heine and Katy Bachman, Mediaweek
Clear Channel has confirmed that it has received a subpoena from Eliot Spitzer, as part of the New York State Attorney General's investigation into allegations of payola in the radio industry.
In a statement, the company said it is "cooperating fully with [Spitzer's] investigation into the industry's use of independent promoters and associated allegations of 'pay for play.'"
Scientists are calling for more time to study what appears to be a drug-resistant strain of AIDS in a New York man, as reported Friday.
Most alarming about this article is the reported laxity and ignorance about AIDS prevention among members of a generation that has come up with a false sense of security from retro-viral cocktails that have significantly slowed the progress of the AIDS virus in the body. Are we running the risk of a new and even more deadly AIDS outbreak in the near future?
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