Comment - Jones Soda on borrowed time
Any port will do in a storm, as the saying goes, and Jones Soda might do well to remember it.
The soft drinks group today (1 April) reported losses of US$10.5m for 2009 and sales down by 28% for the year.
On the plus side, losses are down 31% on those of 2008.
However, this is a small mercy considering that the company reiterated that there are "substantial doubts" about its ability to stay in business and that it sees no more room for "meaningful cost containment". With a $10m jump back to the black and sales on the slide, that's not a great situation.
The firm's decision to jeopardise a potential merger into fellow soft drinks group Reed's looks more and more dubious.
Jones maintained that it has several options, such as share offerings, debt refinancing and strategic partnerships. It has said it is in talks with a "third party" over a merger, or even out-and-out takeover.
For all we know, perhaps there is some sugar daddy ready to ride to the group's rescue. Then again, perhaps there isn't; afterall, we've been waiting for Jones to come up with something since late 2009.
Granted, Reed's yesterday reported full-year losses of US$2.6m and also saw sales dip. Jones, then, would hardly be leaping onto a bed of roses.
Still, we see today's results as further confirmation of what we argued last week - namely that Jones looks to be playing a dangerous game and risking relations with Reed's at such a perilous juncture may not be a wise idea.
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