By: DOTT JOSE on Mercoledì 04 Settembre 2002 14:18
ma allora non le delistano ??
NEW YORK -- Edison Schools Inc. (NasdaqNM:EDSN - News) , the for-profit manager of public schools that was once the darling of both Wall Street investors and school- choice advocates, is likely to be put on notice for delisting from the Nasdaq Stock Market at the close of trading Thursday.
Edison's shares, battered from contract cancellations and continued losses, traded at 45 cents, down five cents, or 10%, at 4 p.m. EDT Thursday -- well below the $1 closing bid price that Nasdaq requires for continued listing on Nasdaq's National Market. A company that falls under the threshold for 30 trading days is delisted unless it rebounds, and stays above $1 for 10 consecutive trading days in a three-month grace period followng the 30 days.
Edison last closed at $1 on July 19, 29 trading days ago. Its stock has been buffeted this year as school districts from Boston to Georgia dropped contracts, citing low student performance, and investors soured on the company's heavy expenses and a revenue restatement. It traded as high as $38.75 in 2001.
"We take the drop in our stock price and the possibility of Nasdaq delisting seriously and we'll address it in a variety of ways," said Adam Tucker, an Edison spokesman.
Companies that are removed from the Nasdaq National Market can apply to trade on the Nasdaq SmallCap market, though they still must stay above $1. Some perform a reverse stock-split to quickly boost share price.
Mr. Tucker said he couldn't comment on Edison's immediate plans. The company has an earnings call scheduled next week.
Earlier this month, the Dallas school district dropped Edison from the seven schools it managed in that city, three years into a five-year, $39 million contract. Edison also picked up a $60 million contract to manage 20 low- performing Philadelphia schools, though it had expected 45 schools.
Edison manages 150 schools in 23 states, enrolling 84,000 students. It has never turned a profit and lost $16.9 million in the third fiscal quarter of this year. Mr. Tucker said the company expects to be profitable on the basis of earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2003.
-By Charles Forelle; The Wall Street Journal; 617-654-6867