Measured Moves Ahead

Most black-owned stocks gained ground in the first half of the decade

steady growth. Broadway Financial’s 52-week high was $13.94, and it was trading at $10.35 in July.

Tumultuous times in broadcasting brought the stocks of radio and television companies spiraling down. Granite Broadcasting Corp. (OTCBB: GBTVK.OB), which owns and operates, or provides programming, sales, and other services to 13 television stations throughout the country, was delisted from the NASDAQ SmallCap in August because its market value fell to an unacceptable low. Its stock price started to fall in 2001 after CEO Don Cornwell offered NBC some $360 million for 10 years in exchange for his San Jose-based KNTV becoming an NBC affiliate.

Granite’s station portfolio includes NBC, ABC, CBS, and two major market WB affiliates. Now trading on the Over the Counter Bulletin Board (OTCBB), its stock hovered at around $0.21 in July. In July 2001 it was trading at $2.75

Once the pearl of black-owned, publicly traded companies, Radio One Inc. (NASDAQ: ROIA) has watched its stock lose ground recently. Down 19.94% from last year, ROIA was selling at around $12.81 in July. The company, which owns and operates 69 radio stations in 22 of the top 53 African American markets nationwide, most recently added the Tom Joyner Morning Show to its station programming. Company revenues rose 5.48% last year, from $303 million to $319 million.

Michael Corty, an analyst with mutual fund company Morningstar Inc., theorizes that this down period for Radio One could be related to a drop in the price of radio broadcasting stocks as a group in the last 18 months. “Weaker growth prospects for radio broadcasting companies in the last few years may have made investors more negative about those stocks,” says Corty.

Unfortunately, there are three black-owned, publicly traded companies that will no longer be listed on the BE Black Stock Index: DME Interactive Holdings Inc. (OTCPK: DGMF), Caraco Pharmaceutical Laboratories Ltd. (AMEX: CPD), and eChapman Inc. (OTCPK: ECMN). Caraco sold a controlling 63% interest in its enterprise to India’s Sun Pharmaceuticals. Nathan Chapman, CEO of eChapman, was convicted of defrauding a state pension fund in 2004. His company’s stock has been trading for less than $1 since January 2002 and was delisted by the NASDAQ stock exchange later that year. DME’s Website and software development company hasn’t been able to bounce back since founder Darien Dash trumpeted a potential deal with America Online back in 2001. The deal never came to fruition and Dash has been laying low for the last few years. DME last traded for less than $0.05.

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