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Poncin Yachts Drops to Record on Credito

04/06/2008 par Ancien4425 0
Poncin Yachts Drops to Record on Creditor Protection (Update1)

By Albertina Torsoli

June 4 (Bloomberg) -- Poncin Yachts, the French maker of Harmony sailboats, slumped to a record in

Paris trading after receiving protection from its creditors for six months and saying it may sell


Poncin fell as much as 1.20 euros, or 38 percent, to 2 euros and traded at 2.61 euros at 10:56 a.m.,

the lowest since the company first sold shares to the public at 9.80 euros in May 2005. The stock

has lost 43 percent this year, cutting Poncin's market value to 24.5 million euros ($38 million).

The stock resumed trading today after having been suspended on May 30.

The court order will allow Poncin, based in the port of La Rochelle, on the Atlantic coast, to

renegotiate 22 million euros of debt, the boatmaker said June 2. The global financial crisis has led

to a drop in demand for its Harmony sailboats in countries such as Spain, Chief Executive Officer

Olivier Poncin said in an interview yesterday.

``The creditor protection is bad news,'' said Annie Bonal, an analyst at Gilbert Dupont in Paris,

who lowered her recommendation to ``sell'' from ``accumulate'' yesterday, cutting a price

estimate by 34 percent to 2.10 euros. ``It's not a given that they will succeed in renegotiating

the debt.''

Olivier Poncin, who founded the company in 2001, said yesterday the boatmaker is in talks about the

sale of assets including its Kelt unit. Kelt makes White Shark and Sea Hawk motor boats and had

sales of 9.6 million euros in the year through August, accounting for about 18 percent of Poncin

Yachts' total. The unit reported a loss of 788,000 euros.

Wealthy Clients

To win wealthier clients, whose fortunes are less affected by an economic slowdown, Poncin Yachts

will start producing Harmony sailboats only by orders and focus on luxury vessels such as Catana

catamarans, the CEO said yesterday.

``They are basically stopping the production of Harmony sailboats and it's based on this theme that

they had introduced the company on the market,'' said Bonal. ``Even Catana, which will be their

main focus, still loses money. It's essential that they sell Kelt now.''

Poncin said yesterday that no decision has been made on the sale of assets and he isn't willing to

sell at any price.

To contact the reporter on this story: Albertina Torsoli in Paris at

Last Updated: June 4, 2008 05:10 EDT

04/06/2008 par Ancien4425 0
Radio BFM, le 4 juin 08 : Interview Olivier Poncin

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