Advanced sales plunge 90% in first half

Drop stems from U.F.O.'s 1st qtr. rev falloff

COLOGNE — Ailing German film financier and distributor Advanced Medien reported a drastic 90% collapse in top line sales for the first half of 2003, despite posting improved bottom line performance.

Company reported a narrowed net loss of $2.9 million for the first six months of the year compared to $3.5 million in the same period a year ago.

But the German producer’s top line totaled only $900,000 in sales, down from $11 million in the corresponding 2002 period. Shrinking numbers stem mostly from a steep sales falloff at U.S.-based operating subsid Unified Film Organization in the first quarter and the fact that the division’s financials for the second quarter of 2003 could not be included in the interim financial statements of the parent company.

Advanced said U.F.O. has refused to cooperate with its parent.

German parent said it is trying to sell the U.S. unit as part of the financial restructuring of its once-vibrant film sales business.

Company claims it has signed a letter of intent with an unnamed potential buyer of the unit, which is $11 million in debt. Advanced also noted that U.F.O.’s spinoff would clear the path for a linkup with a different partner.

“We are in substantial talks with a non-stock market-listed media company,” CEO Otto Dauer recently said at the company’s annual shareholders’ meeting.