Stagwell & MDC Partners

Let’s hope that the MDC Partners’ special meeting to consider the takeover by Mark Penn’s Stagwell Media gets adjourned again and again.

Monitoring the verbal slugfest between Stagwell and Indaba Capital, which opposes the terms of the deal, has been very, very entertaining.

Indaba issued a press release on July 12 that spells out why it opposes the updated terms of the transaction, or as Derek Schrier, managing partner, put it:

“We are not going to acquiesce to Mr. Penn’s desire to ram through self-serving deal terms that undervalue MDC’s public company structure, lack an appropriate control premium and rely on completely outdated pandemic economics.” Touche!

Schrier went to say that Penn is treating the process like a game of political poker.

Indaba hopes Penn “comes to understand that he cannot rely on bombastic negotiating threats and non-negotiated, immaterial bumps that lack shareholder support to get this deal done.”

And in the opposing corner, Stagwell Media partner Jay Leveton answered the bell in a July 14 release.

“Indaba has, in our opinion, become divorced from any reality in its ever more shrill attempts to extract more value in the combination of MDC and Stagwell’s operating business. Indaba appears to be following through on its recent threats to Stagwell to sink the deal if Indaba does not get its way.” Bravo!

Leveton said Indaba’s plan “appears to be growing verbal threats, personal attacks and issuing releases with false and misleading statements.”

The special shareholders meeting was set for June 22 and has been adjourned until July 26.

My fingers are crossed for another adjournment to stretch out the Stagwell/Indaba action through the dog and slow-news days of August.

From Russia with love… How often does the Kremlin leak secret documents to the western media about what went on at a Russian national security meeting? Nada….

That’s why I have my doubts about the blockbuster story in The Guardian about Russia’s plan to use “all possible force” to make Donald Trump president.

There’s just something fishy about the story.

Russia president Vladimir Putin personally authorized the plan, according to the British paper.

The Guardian claims there was a psychological assessment of Trump. It profiled Trump as an “impulsive, mentally unstable and unbalanced individual who suffers from an inferiority complex.” Did Putin interview Nancy Pelosi for the assessment?

The Kremlin reportedly backed Trump to spur “social turmoil” in the US.

His election certainly did trigger social turmoil and his denial of defeat in 2020 continues to tear apart the fabric of American democracy.

The Guardian story, though, is too perfect. It makes me a bit queasy with a feeling that Putin is still wreaking havoc in the US by concocting a tale of a secret meeting of Kremlin spies to take over the White House.

Putin fooled us once via his Facebook support of Trump’s election. Is he doing it again by hand-delivering Russian propaganda to the Guardian?

Trump heeds Rudy’s sage advice... The media have had great fun with news that Donald Trump’s now former lawyer Rudy Giuliani was bombed on Election Night, according to the forthcoming book, “I Alone Can Fix it: Donald J. Trump’s Catastrophic Final Year.”

As the state-by-state results came in and showed that Trump’s early lead over Joe Biden was vanishing, an inebriated Rudy told campaign managers in the White House to declare victory.

“Giuliani’s grand plan,” wrote Carol Leonning and Philip Rucker, “was to just to say Trump won, state after state, based on nothing.”

Campaign manager Bill Stepien, chief of staff Mark Meadows, and senior advisor Jason Miller thought Rudy’s recommendation was incoherent and irresponsible.

Meadows told Rudy, “We can’t do that.”

Obviously, Trump disagreed. He took Rudy’s sage advice to heart and then took it a step further.

He declared victory in state after state based on the Big Lie that the elections were stolen. Trump out-Rudyed Rudy.

Though Giuliani is currently suspended from practicing law in New York, he may have a new career as campaign manager for his son Andrew’s run for Governor of the Empire State.

Slainte, Rudy.