Tuesday, June 18, 2002

UNIVERSAL COWED: We've not really had as much fun with the chronic crisises at Vivendi-Universal as we might have done, but since part of their attempts to turn themselves from stock market basket case into a lean sleek money panther seem to involve kicking Jarvis, Candida onto the dole, that special treatment must end. V-U are trying to stop their sobbing by flogging off their water businesses - yeah, we know, what's movies and music got to do with poo and piss (oh, hang on: is the answer Limp Bizkit, Mark?) but we've got a better idea. Why not take a cue from the way they treat their customers, and simply get all their shareholders to buy their shares again? They could reissue their shares as "Special editions", by reprinting them on nicer paper, with a three extra lines and a different logo on the top. And they could do a version that has deleted paragraphs. Or the accoutant's cut, so you can experience the share certificate the way it was meant to be before the solicitors got their hands on it. Or... (continued p 94)

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