Village Roadshow to consider privatisation proposal

John and Robert Kirby, the sons of Village Roadshow founder Roc Kirby, have told the Australian Securities Exchange that they are considering a proposal to make the cinema, theme parks and film production company private. This is not the first time that the controllers of the business have considered the move.

According to analysts the market would more than welcome the step considering the manner in which the business is run.

John and Robert Kirby and Graham Burke each an executive director of Village together own 61 per cent of the sprawling entertainment group and their dominance of the group's affairs have always evoked cynicism of the Village's governance and a growing distrust of every corporate move.

Village's theme parks, cinemas, film distribution businesses would qualify for a public listing, but inspite of some well-credentialled independent directors, the Village inspires little confidence and a reputation of being a plaything in the hands of the insiders.

Analysts say as a group it is better suited to private ownership and the market would welcome any privatisation proposal as long as it was not exploitative.

Village has disclosed that Village Roadshow Corporation controlled by the three executive directors, has said it was moving to privatise the listed entity, which would lead to the cancellation or acquisition of all preference and ordinary shares.

The proposal however is not complete and a number of key issues have yet to be addressed including the terms and the funding.