Philips takes healthy Pace profit

Chris Forrester


Dutch electronics giant Philips sold its 17% stake in set-top box supplier Pace on Friday April 17, taking advantage of Pace’s buoyant stock price. Philips held 50.7m Pace shares as part of the reverse take-over of its own set-top box division, acquired by Pace last April.

Philips was in a lock-up that was due to expire in a few days (on April 21) and Pace permitted the lock-up to be waived in order for the share sale to take place. JP Morgan Cazenove handled the share sale for Philips. Philips said it would book a €48m gain ($63m) on the transaction. They added that its Pace stake was “non-core”.

The sale further boosted Pace’s share price on Friday, which has risen from about 35p last November to 143.5p (up 2.5%) on Friday.

Last week Philips itself suffered a downgrade from Morgan Stanley, which advised investors to mark the stock as “Underweight” in their portfolios.