2 Key Owners Boost Stake in Pathe : Shareholders OK Trading Stock for $150 Million in Cash

Times Staff Writer

Giancarlo Parretti and Florio Fiorini, who head a European group that rescued Los Angeles movie maker Cannon Group in 1988 and recently renamed it Pathe Communications, produced their first stockholders' meeting Monday. It was four years to the day since the company last held an annual meeting.

In the chief matter before them, public shareholders joined the new management to approve issuance of 41.4 million new Pathe shares to Parretti and Fiorini, its majority owners. The stock, which boosts the group's interest to 88.5% from 62.5%, is in exchange for a $150-million cash transfusion for Pathe.

Cannon's last annual meeting in 1985 was followed by a long spiral of losses, acquisitions and troubles with securities regulators under the company's then-largest stockholders and executives, Menahem Golan and Yorum Globus.

Although film director Golan recently went into independent film production on his own, Globus stayed with Parretti and Fiorini to handle distribution of an ambitious slate of films to be produced by Alan Ladd Jr.

Ladd, who is co-chairman of the Pathe parent company and chairman and chief executive of its subsidiary Pathe Entertainment, made his corporate debut before stockholders Monday. Fewer than 50 stockholders attended the meeting, held in a Pathe film-screening room in Los Angeles.

Neither Ladd nor Globus, who is co-president, was called upon to speak. Fiorini, who is chairman, and Parretti, who is president and chief executive, did the talking for the company, along with company attorney Fabio Serena.

Parretti said new management would pursue its plans undeterred by "the possibility of negative publicity."

In recent months, he has been the subject of much unfavorable press in the United States and Europe over criminal charges against him in Italy and his varying accounts of the charges in interviews and public documents.

In an impromptu press conference before the meeting, Fiorini minimized the effects and importance of a setback to the European group's effort to acquire a bigger interest in the French entertainment firm Pathe Cinema.

He denied press reports that action by France's Ministry of Finance had "blocked" the acquisition of Pathe Cinema by a group of investors including Parretti and French financier Max Theret.

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