Bell Micro faces delisting

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Bell Micro faces delisting

Paul Kunert

In seven days Bell Micro could be delisted from the Nasdaq if it fails to regain compliance with the market's filing requirements but the distributor has played down the impact of such an outcome.

The US stock market rules require Bell to provide Nasdaq with periodic reports, hold an annual meeting with shareholders within 12 months after the end of each fiscal year and solicit proxies and provide proxy statements.

The 17 March deadline for the documents to be filed is looming and channel sources believe delisting would "have a big impact on its credit rating because that is based on the market cap" - £39.78m on 6 March.

But Graeme Watt, Bell Micro president for Europe, remained positive: "We have already managed and are in a position to manage any impact, which we think will be minimal."

He said the firm was in "great shape" but conceded one impact of the pending deadline had been on the share price which, as of 6 March, stood at $2.62, down from a year-high of $7.26.

One boost Bell received last month is the confirmation that backers including Bank Of America had agreed to waive its obligation to provide audited financial statements through September 2008 and, where applicable, the requirement that the company remain listed on Nasdaq.

Earlier this year, the US distribution giant outlined estimated costs and charges to put right the accounting errors it had made over the last eleven years (MicroScope 14 January 2008).

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