Sunday, December 13, 2009

Terra Firma looking for someone to blame

While they're desperately trying to find someone willing to invest in their business, Terra Firma are trying to shift the blame for their ridiculous investment in EMI. They're suing Citigroup for fraud.

Oh, yes:

British equity firm Terra Firma Investments has sued Citigroup Inc., claiming it paid a "fraudulently inflated price" of 4 billion pounds for EMI's label and music publishing interests in 2007 as a result of misrepresentations made by the lender. In the action, filed Friday in New York Supreme Court, Terra Firma claims to have lost equity in the billions of dollars as a result of its heavily leveraged purchase of the struggling music company.

The suit adds that Citi has "sought to wrest control of EMI by pushing it into, or to the brink of bankruptcy."

I'm sure that everyone was saying how clever Terra Firma were back when they were buying up EMI, detailing the wisdom of Hands and the shrewd investment choices they were known for making. Now, it seems, Terra Firma are trying to convince us they were like country schmoes, turning up and being duped by a naughty bank.

Sure, everyone hates banks and bankers, Terra Firma. But they also hate private equity groups. And a private equity group trying to claim it was bamboozled by a bank elicts very little sympathy in the real world, as your claim seems to consist of whining there weren't enough people to sack and assets to flog off to keep your profit levels aloft.

Still, good luck with seeking someone to put a billion quid into a business you're simultaneously claiming in court is fundamentally flawed. Let us know how that works out for you.

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