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Highlight, Constantin pact

Management critical of financial offer as being too low

BERLIN — Swiss rights trader Highlight Communications has acquired a majority stake in leading Teutonic producer-distrib Constantin Film.

Highlight took 57.98% of Constantin following its buyout offer last month to shareholders, which expired July 14. But under an agreement reached with Constantin founder and minority shareholder Bernd Eichinger, Highlight will keep a 50.1% stake and sell off additional shares.

Despite the agreement with Eichinger, Constantin’s management had criticized Highlight’s offer of e4.50 ($5.07) per share as too low. Eichinger and Highlight agreed to a 10-year shareholding partnership to run the Munich-based indie, which also will merge film production and distribution operations.

Highlight will continue to run its own home entertainment and sports rights operations separately.

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