Open TV ownership dispute rumbles on

Swiss TV technology company Kudelski has rejected a proposal that its shareholding in interactive TV specialist OpenTV is bought out using OpenTV’s cash reserves. The recommendation was made earlier this week by Discovery Group, OpenTV’s largest shareholder, which has been openly critical of Kudelski.

The Swiss company responded to the suggestion its 32% stake is bought out, which would use about US$60m (€43m) of OpenTV’s US$114m cash, with a statement in which it said: “The Kudelski Group confirms that it is not interested in selling its shares of OpenTV.” It added:  “The Kudelski Group reiterates its commitment to remain OpenTV’s controlling shareholder and to protect its investment by undertaking all necessary measures to ensure its long-term success.”

Discovery Group, a Chicago based banking and M&A specialist, and Kudelski have been at loggerheads over the future of OpenTV. Discovery maintains that Kudelski’s main aim in owning OpenTV is access to its large reserve of cash. Kudelski unsuccessfully attempted to acquire the shares in OpenTV it does not already own earlier this year.

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