Murdoch entry into MCH meets Takeover Board obstacle

MCH organises events such as the Baselworld watch and jewellery fair (seen here) and Art Basel, but this year's editions have been cancelled because of coronavirus and the group is struggling. © Keystone / Georgios Kefalas

James Murdoch’s planned entry into the capital of leading Swiss exhibition organiser MCH has hit an obstacle after a decision by the Swiss Takeover Board (TOB). 

This content was published on August 21, 2020 - 12:25

MCH shareholders earlier this month approved an amendment to its statutes allowing Murdoch’s Lupa Systems investment firm to acquire up to 49% of the struggling Swiss company without a public takeover. However, according to the TOB decision, Lupa Systems will now have to make a public offer if it acquires a stake of more than 33.3% of MCH in conjunction with planned capital increases, an MCH press releaseExternal link said on Friday.   

“The MCH Group will now analyse the TOB decision, determine the next steps to be taken and issue information on these,” says the statement. 

MCH, which organises the Art Basel and Baselworld watch and jewellery fairs, has been hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic and is expecting a 50% drop in sales for the current year. 

By having James Murdoch, the son of the media mogul Rupert Murdoch, join the group, MCH Group wants to get back on track financially. To this end, it is planning two capital increases for a total of up to CHF104.5 million ($114.3 million).  

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