Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

IN BRIEF / Entertainment

Kirch Units Seek Bankruptcy Protection

June 13, 2002|Bloomberg News

Leo Kirch, the founder of Germany's second-largest media company, sought protection from creditors for the rest of his business in the country's biggest bankruptcy filing since World War II.

Kirch Holding and its investment arm filed for insolvency, a Munich court said. Kirch's other businesses--Europe's No. 1 film library and a pay-television unit whose investors include Rupert Murdoch--collapsed in April and May.

The Munich-based company, which owns the broadcasting rights to the soccer World Cup and has film contracts with Hollywood studios including Walt Disney Co., is disintegrating after a four-decade expansion led to $5.7 billion in debt and mounting losses. More than 80 companies, including Sony Corp.'s Columbia Pictures, are interested in buying what's left.

Kirch, 75, stepped down as chief executive in April to pave the way for new management to sell the remains of the film rights company he founded in 1959.

Assets on sale include a film and TV library. Kirch also owns a controlling stake in the company that runs Formula One racing and more than 50% in Germany's biggest TV broadcaster.

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|