EmptyEdwards adds 8 to Web coverage
A.G. Edwards began coverage of eight Internet companies Wednesday, saying it expects search leader Google Inc. to develop innovative business models and increase market share and revenue, while rival Yahoo! Inc. is shaping up to have a "transformational" 2007. Analyst Denise Garcia also initiated coverage of IAC/InterActive Corp, the Knot Inc., aQuantive Inc., Bankrate Inc., Monster Worldwide Inc. and ValueClick Inc. Garcia gave Google and Yahoo! "buy" ratings and IAC/InterActiveCorp a "hold," concerned that weak retail sales and lower margins in its Home Shopping Network unit might hurt the company. Shares of all three fell Wednesday.
First-half profit dips at Ten
Ten Network Holdings, the owner of Australia's Ten TV network as well as outdoor advertising business Eye Corp., on Wednesday reported a dip in profit for the first half of the fiscal year, but executives forecast an improvement as the ad market strengthens this year. Ten Network Holdings' net profit after tax fell 12% to AUS$37.7 million ($30.6 million), largely the result of a weaker ad market and higher programming costs, executives said. But Ten remains the most profitable of Australia's three commercial TV networks: Revenue increased 5.9% to AUS$492 million ($394 million).
Atlantis delays takeover deal
Canadian broadcaster Alliance Atlantis Communications said Wednesday that it will delay completion of a pending CAN$2.3 billion ($1.98 billion) takeover by CanWest Global Communications and Goldman Sachs & Co. to allow more time to gather key financial information for debt financing. Alliance Atlantis said completion of the deal is now expected in late July or early August rather than May, as first anticipated, because it is taking longer than expected to gather unaudited financial results from the first quarters of fiscal 2006 and 2007. In January, broadcaster CanWest Global launched the CAN$53 per-share bid for Alliance Atlantis, with most of the purchase price to be covered by Wall Street powerhouse Goldman Sachs.