Court rejects EM.TV suit

Prior individual case on same grounds rejected in August

COLOGNE — A Munich district court rejected a complaint Thursday filed by 59 shareholders of scandal-ridden kidvidder EM.TV seeking compensation for not being apprised of company losses in a timely manner. A prior individual suit on the same grounds was rejected in August.

Once the darling of Germany’s Neuer Markt stock exchange, EM.TV came under fire at the end of last year for unwarranted delay in divulging significant losses to shareholders. The subsequent fallout led to the exit of founder and CEO Thomas Haffa, who was replaced by Werner Klatten.

In August, a lower Munich court rejected a complaint by an individual shareholder who accused EM.TV of misleading investors on its shares’ actual value.

The same complaint was brought forward by the 59 shareholders, who were suing for compensation of DM1.7 million ($800,000). That group was represented by Daniela Bergdolt, head of Bavaria’s shareholders’ protection association.

The court decided Thursday that there was no legal basis for reimbursing the shareholders, essentially echoing the lower court’s finding in the first case.

Separately, a Frankfurt court ruled that stock exchange operator Deutsche Boerse could not eject troubled film licensing company Kinowelt for underperforming on the basis of just-enacted regulations aimed at dropping so-called penny stocks from the exchange.

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