The NY Daily News reports that Magnum Sports & Entertainment's $22 million acquisition of Ford Models never happenedand probably won't. Michael Gross writes that "Magnum failed to come up with the cash." Ford, in its heyday, was home to supermodels Rachel Hunter, Christie Brinkley, and Stephanie Seymour. The deal included more than 80% of the Ford family's equity, which was perhaps indicative of the company's struggle in recent years to attract new talent. The potential acquirer was in much worse shape and Katie Ford is probably thanking her lucky superstars that the transaction never happened. The $22 million was mostly equity, and Magnum's stock is currently trading at $0.002 a share.
The acquisition was being shopped to potential investors in early 2001, when former EMI Chairman, Charles Koppleman, and ex-Madison Square Garden CEO, Bob Gutkowski, had just been brought in to turn around the ailing sports agency, which had been plagued by, among other things, a founder and CEO with travel and entertainment expenses in the millioin-dollar range and a penchant for corporate orgies at the China Club. The unimpressive client list's most recognizable name was washed-out boxer, Shannon Briggs. Bringing in grown ups Koppelman and Gutkowski to plan turnaround strategies over dinner at Elaine's hasn't helped. Koppelman has since left the company and Magnum was de-listed in 2002.
The Word: Ford tough [NY Daily News]
Magnum Sports & Entertainment [PinkSheets.com]