NEW YORK: United Business Media (UBM) has withdrawn its
three-month-old unsolicited takeover bid for Medialink Worldwide. But
UBM subsidiary PRNewswire has insinuated that it will instead aim to go
head to head with the electronic media giant.
UBM and Medialink both claim the other did not present an adequate
interest in the takeover deal that could have combined Medialink's
online and video production and distribution capabilities with PRN's
distribution of press releases and related multimedia.
Charlie Morin, CEO of PRN, vowed to continue his current strategy to
expand PRN either through acquisition, growth, or a combination of the
two: "We will pursue a direction that will likely put us in direct
competition with Medialink in the not too distant future."
But Larry Moskowitz, Medialink chairman, president, and CEO, laughed
this off: "I find it humorous that he says this, because they've been
trying to compete with us for at least five years, if not more. If they
do manage to break into the business, we look forward to increased
activity, because it will help grow the market. We hope they will be
honest and honorable and innovative."
Morin said that it was a joint decision of PRN and parent company UBM to
rescind its offer of $5 per share to Medialink stockholders.
Media-link stock fell dollars .55, from $2.75 to $2.20, on
the day of the announcement, while UBM's Nasdaq-listed stock fell
dollars .10, from $7.50 to $7.40.
Moskowitz said his shareholders had deemed the UBM offer totally
"Our largest shareholders deemed the long-term value of Medialink as far
more valuable (than the UBM offer)," said Moskowitz. He added that he
was not impressed with UBM's fortunes.
"We did have to take note of the serious deterioration of their
business," said Moskowitz, naming numerous stock downgrades and waves of
layoffs as his main concerns.
Morin made a similar argument against Medialink, saying he felt the
company's recently announced poor performance brings into question
Medialink's valuation as it stands. However, Morin said that the main
reason UBM withdrew its offer was a lack of reaction from Medialink.
"We offered to present our version of a joint vision of the company to
his board of directors, and they refused," said Morin. "If the offer was
inadequate, it was never brought to our attention, because they never
Moskowitz said Morin's comment was completely false, and that Medialink
performed its fiduciary duties.