Fallout Begins With Stewart’s Guilty Verdict

Discussion
Mar 08, 2004
George Anderson

By George Anderson


Martha Stewart’s conviction on conspiracy, obstruction of justice and two counts of making false statements about her sale of ImClone stock may land her in jail. It has already
hit her company’s stock and gotten her television show canceled in at least one market.


Share prices of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia dropped 23 percent on Friday after the verdict was announced.


In New York, WCBS promptly canceled the Martha Stewart Living television program.


Michael Holland, a money manager in New York stated the obvious to CBS MarketWatch, “She was enormously positive for the brand. The downside is just what happened. It’s very
significant body blow to branding.”


Ms. Stewart is scheduled for sentencing on June 17. She will be back in court today to meet with her probation officer.


Moderator’s Comment: How do you think consumers will react to Martha Stewart’s conviction?
What should Kmart do?


A open letter on Ms. Stewart’s Web site (www.marthatalks.com) reads:


“I am obviously distressed by the jury’s verdict but I continue to take comfort in knowing that I have the confidence and enduring support of my family
and friends.


“I will appeal the verdict and continue to fight to clear my name. I believe in the fairness of the judicial system and remain confident that I will ultimately
prevail.


“I can’t tell you how much I appreciate all the words of encouragement I have received from thousands of supporters. It is your continued support that will
keep me going until I am completely exonerated.”
George
Anderson – Moderator

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