Once home to a dozen upstart media companies which brazenly thought they could challenge the might of Hollywood, Germany's Neuer Markt is to close next year.
The closure decision is part of a wider re-organisation of Germany's stockmarkets and comes too late to make much difference to anyone. The stockmarket authorities (Deutsche Boerse) acknowledged that the average drop in value of the companies traded on the second tier Neuer Markt was a colossal 96%. Most of the media high fliers which it gave wings to have since imploded.
Some like Kinowelt and Helkon actually filed for insolvency protection. Others like EM.TV & Merchandising, Splendid and Intertainment saw their ambitious expansion plans fall to pieces. Companies such as F.A.M.E have already tried to leave the market as the cost of listing outweighed the benefits that a quote on an unloved stockmarket brought them. And still others such as Highlight and Constantin today soldier on looking embarrassed by their Neuer Market companions.
The Neuer Markt and the still less regulated Smaller Companies Market (SMAX) will disappear. In their place Deutsche Boerse will divide the main market into two sections: a "Prime Standard" section with rules on financial reporting and transparency that are up to international standards, and a "Domestic Standard" section with less stringent rules.
It seems likely that those film and media companies with sound finances will make a simple enough transition to one of the two new market segments. For the others, the Neuer Markt closure will be the last chapter in a sorry tale of media hype briefly triumphing over financial realities.
And the reality today is that wealthy Germany still has plenty of cash available for film financing. But it is channelled through fund managers and regional pools rather than through an equity market which encouraged media entrepreneurs to take outrageous risks.