Arcandor takes fresh beating as asset sales loom
FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Arcandor (AROG.DE) shares fell almost a third to an all-time low Thursday on growing concern that the German group could ditch assets at fire-sale prices only a day after it said it had secured financing.
Stock in the retail and tourism group plunged 30 percent and closed at 2.50 euros. It has fallen around 36 percent in the past four weeks.
Fresh concern was sparked by a company statement late on Wednesday saying Arcandor was reviewing its holding structure in connection with a fresh financing package it had announced earlier in the day.
This process would include the possibility of raising funds by reducing its ownership in its Karstadt department store unit and its tourism arm Thomas Cook (TCG.L), it said.
This marked a sharp reversal for Arcandor, which had repeatedly said it would not sell or reduce its roughly 52 percent stake in Thomas Cook, which generates about 60 percent of the group's annual sales.
Thomas Cook shares closed down 4 percent in London.
"At the moment there is the danger that the assets could be sold well under their long-term value because of difficult market conditions," analyst Hans-Peter Kuhlmann at LBBW bank told clients in a research note.
Financial sources said earlier that Thomas Cook shares were being used as collateral for bank loans.
Arcandor's volatile share price has prompted Germany's financial watchdog, BaFin, to look into the matter.
A spokeswoman said BaFin would routinely check Arcandor's share price swings as well as the company's recent publications. The process could take weeks, she added.
(Reporting by Eva Kuehnen and Nikola Rotscheroth in Duesseldorf; editing by Elaine Hardcastle)
- Tweet this
- Share this
- Digg this