If the above headline made you feel like you were experiencing ImClone déjà vu, don’t worry; it doesn’t seem like Martha sold more than a third of her Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia (MSO) holdings because of any inside information. Still, she’s quietly unloaded more than 700,000 shares since December.
She then offloaded 256,313 shares over three different sales in January, SEC filings show.
In addition, Stewart gave 177,000 of her 1.8 million Class A shares to the Martha Stewart centre for Living at Mount Sinai Hospital. Excluding the gift to the hospital, Stewart has sold roughly 29 per cent of her Class A shares, according to Elizabeth Estroff, a company spokeswoman, who pointed out the recent sales represent just 2 per cent of her total ownership of the company.
Stewart still owns 27.8 million of the company’s Class B shares, giving her control of 92 per cent of voting matters.
We can’t blame Martha for getting out of the kitchen, so to speak. MSO’s stock, like that of pretty much every media company, has been sinking. In fact, based on her prior holdings, we figured that she’d lost $323 million over the course of 2008.
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