Helkon feels Kirch pinch

Co. to write off $9 mil in losses

BERLIN — Helkon Media has joined the growing list of companies whose balance sheets have had to be rewritten following the collapse of German giant Kirch Media.

Company said Wednesday it was slating just 5% of its titles for pay TV, slashed from 20%, as a result of growing uncertainty in the German market.

Helkon is writing off 10 million euros ($9 million) in related one-time losses. The company hopes to recoup some of that from the home entertainment market.

A spokesman said “the positive development in the video-DVD segment” would compensate for lower pay TV revenues, and the company plans to up the number of titles released on videocassette and DVD.

Helkon will continue providing content to Germany’s terrestrial TV market. It added that its own liquidity would not be affected by the rights reallocation.

Earlier this week Cologne-based Splendid Medien was forced to write off part of the $4.8 million owed by Kirch Media for a free-TV film package. Its readjusted balance sheet saw annual losses increase by $5.1 million to $7.7 million last year.

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