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Mattel plans spinoff
November 2, 1999: 8:00 a.m. ET

Toy maker, partners to invest $37.5M in Learning Co. genealogy unit
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NEW YORK (CNNfn) - Mattel Inc. said Tuesday it will spin off a majority stake in a genealogy Web site, a subsidiary of the toy maker's troubled Learning Co. business, and invest a combined $37.5 million in the venture with a group of partners.
     Mattel will form LLC with partners A&E Television Networks, Hearst Interactive Media, Thomas H. Lee Partners and Weston Presidio Capital. The move to separate the Web site is part of a broader strategy to leverage the company's software assets to stand-alone Internet-based businesses, the company said.
     Learning Co.'s Broderbund unit set up the site last year after a decade of selling Family Tree Maker software and other products. The online service includes research materials and databases.
     Mattel's Learning Co. unit was expected to post a profit of $50 million in the third quarter, but ended up recording a loss of $105 million.
     Stock in El Segundo, Calif.-based Mattel, trading near 52-week lows, closed up 1/8 at 13-9/16 Monday. Back to top


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