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Asylum’s The Content Group Acquires ‘Dance Moms’ Producer Collins Avenue Entertainment From Kew Media


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EXCLUSIVE: The Content Group, the flagship division of Steve Michaels’ Asylum Entertainment Group, has acquired reality production company Collins Avenue Entertainment, which is behind Lifetime’s popular Dance Mons franchise, from Kew Media Group.

Under the deal, TCG will retain all of Collins Avenue’s physical assets, intellectual properties, contracts as well as key staff, including SVP of Development, Lindsay Schwartz.

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Founded by Jeff Collins more than a decade ago, Collins Avenue is best known for producing eight seasons, eight spinoffs and specials of the Lifetime series Dance Moms,  as well as the CW’s Fly Girls and Animal Planet’s American Stuffers. Jodi Flynn, President of TCG, will oversee the company.

Collins Avenue marks the first acquisition for TCG, which was launched in 2018 when Michaels bought back Asylum Entertainment from Legendary. TCG is the biggest of AEG’s portfolio of companies that also includes international scripted drama-focused Clovis Entertainment and podcast division Audity.

“Acquisitions are an integral part of our strategy as we continue to step forward in building a diversified content business,” said, Michaels, CEO of TCG and AEG. “Collins Avenue is a perfect fit for our company.”

Financial terms were not disclosed. Two years ago, Kew Media paid $104 million for six companies, the biggest of which, Content Media Corporation (no relation to Asylum’s The Content Group), brought in the five companies it controlled, including Collins Avenue.

TCG’s acquisition of Collins Avenue comes on the heels of Collins’ departure from the company earlier this month, with the fate of the flagship Dance Mons series in limbo at Lifetime. It also comes amid questions about Kew’s future.

Kew Media has been undertaking a strategic review of the business with the company open to being split up or sold. At the end of last year, the Leaving Neverland distributor revealed that its lenders had provided notice of an event of default under its senior credit facilities, which Kew said was due to the “inaccurate information” provided to them by the former CFO, Geoff Webb, who left the business.

There has been chatter that Kew Media Group may be bought by private equity investors, which would delist the company from the stock market. An asset sale could be another route, if the deal for Collins Avenue is any indication.

The Content Group was advised in the transaction by Michael P. Weisberg at Brutzkus Gubner.

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Source: Asylum’s The Content Group Acquires ‘Dance Moms’ Producer Collins Avenue Entertainment From Kew Media

Malls across the US are trying to survive the 'retail apocalypse' by adding rides, indoor ski parks, and other entertainment options


A retail apocalypse has been taking place in malls across the US over the past few years. Getty Images

Source: Business Insider

Online shopping is the main culprit, with revenue from online sales overtaking that of brick-and-mortar stores last year. Getty Images

Source: CNBC

And more than 5,800 more store closures were announced in 2019. AP

Source: Business Insider

Major retail stores such as Victoria's Secret, JCPenney, Gap, and Forever 21 have closed numerous locations within the last two years. John Keeble/Getty Images

Source: Business Insider

And about 10 retailers filed for bankruptcy or liquidation in 2019. Barney's filed for bankruptcy this year. Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Source: Business Insider

Around 25% of malls are expected to close in the next five years. Liz Kraker/Business Insider

Source: Gothamist

A mall's demise usually begins with the loss of one or more of its anchor department stores. Robert Barnes/Getty Images

Source: Business Insider Today

Traditionally, a mall has major retailers at either end. Eva Hambach/AFP/Getty Images

Source: Business Insider Today

The passageways connecting these anchor stores are usually filled with smaller stores and boutiques. Getty Images

Source: Business Insider Today

But once anchor stores disappear, smaller stores often break their leases and leave or negotiate a cheaper rent. Liz Kraker/Business Insider

Source: Business Insider Today

In the next decade, analysts are predicting more than 300 malls to close. Oli Scarff/Getty Images

 Source: Business Insider Today

In order to stay alive, malls need to reinvent themselves. And some malls are doing just that. SOPA Images/Getty Images

Source: Business Insider Today

Destiny USA is a mall in Syracuse, New York, that is trying to revamp its identity. Destiny USA

Source: Business Insider Today

The carousel has been around since 1909, and for many, it represents the heart of the mall. CNYCentral

Source: Business Insider Today

One of its efforts in doing so was restoring the historic carousel. The revamp plan also included expanding the mall to accommodate new entertainment options. CNYCentral.com

Source: Business Insider Today

… a go-kart track … Business Insider Today

and a bowling alley, not to mention laser tag and several arcades. Business Insider Today

As a result of all these additions, Destiny USA is now 55% entertainment and 45% retail. Business Insider Today

Source: Business Insider Today

Another mall that is taking the entertainment approach from the start is American Dream. Shoshy Ciment/Business Insider

Source: New York Post

Located in East Rutherford, New Jersey, American Dream is the second-largest mall in the US. A festive area in the American Dream mall. Shoshy Ciment/Business Insider

Source: New York Post/Gothamist

55% of American Dream's space is dedicated to entertainment and dining, while only 45% is for retail — the same ratio as Destiny USA in Syracuse. A line waiting for one of the rides in American Dream. Shoshy Ciment/Business Insider

Source: Forbes

American Dream has an ice rink, and in December, a 180,000-square-foot, 16-story indoor ski and snowboard park opened. NJTV News/YouTube

Source: New York Post/CBS News/Patch

Around 350 shops will also make their way to the mall in 2020, along with 100 dining options. Business Insider/Mary Hanbury

Source: Staten Island Live

Ken Downing, the chief creative officer of Triple Five Group, who helped create American Dream, told the New York Post that he wanted to create a mall that could offer everything to consumers. A ticket booth at American Dream. Shoshy Ciment/Business Insider

Source: New York Post

"We're taking the 'M' out of 'mall' and created an 'all,' a welcoming community for everyone," Downing told the Post. Construction of the water park at American Dream. Shoshy Ciment/Business Insider

Source: New York Post

Mall operators are hoping that if they can lure customers with recreation options, they'll spend money on retail as well. Jessica Rinaldi/Reuters

Source: Business Insider Today

"The largest percent, if you broke down our sales, it's still retail," Rob Schoeneck, general manager of Destiny USA, told Business Insider. Business Insider

Source: Business Insider Today

Schoeneck said that by combining retail with dining and entertainment options, it gives the mall a tremendous opportunity to bring in new customers and make more money. REUTERS/Charles Platiau

Source: Business Insider Today

It's one example of how malls across America are coping with the retail apocalypse. Business Insider

Source: Business Insider Today


Source: Malls across the US are trying to survive the 'retail apocalypse' by adding rides, indoor ski parks, and other entertainment options

A Note On Event Hospitality & Entertainment Limited's (ASX:EVT) ROE and Debt To Equity


One of the best investments we can make is in our own knowledge and skill set. With that in mind, this article will work through how we can use Return On Equity (ROE) to better understand a business. We'll use ROE to examine Event Hospitality & Entertainment Limited (ASX:EVT), by way of a worked example.

Over the last twelve months Event Hospitality & Entertainment has recorded a ROE of 9.5%. One way to conceptualize this, is that for each A$1 of shareholders' equity it has, the company made A$0.09 in profit.

See our latest analysis for Event Hospitality & Entertainment

How Do You Calculate ROE?

The formula for ROE is:

Return on Equity = Net Profit (from continuing operations) ÷ Shareholders' Equity

Or for Event Hospitality & Entertainment:

9.5% = AU$107m ÷ AU$1.1b (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2019.)

Most readers would understand what net profit is, but it’s worth explaining the concept of shareholders’ equity. It is all the money paid into the company from shareholders, plus any earnings retained. Shareholders' equity can be calculated by subtracting the total liabilities of the company from the total assets of the company.

What Does Return On Equity Signify?

ROE measures a company's profitability against the profit it retains, and any outside investments. The 'return' is the yearly profit. A higher profit will lead to a higher ROE. So, all else equal, investors should like a high ROE. Clearly, then, one can use ROE to compare different companies.

Does Event Hospitality & Entertainment Have A Good ROE?

Arguably the easiest way to assess company's ROE is to compare it with the average in its industry. However, this method is only useful as a rough check, because companies do differ quite a bit within the same industry classification. The image below shows that Event Hospitality & Entertainment has an ROE that is roughly in line with the Entertainment industry average (10%).

ASX:EVT Past Revenue and Net Income, January 23rd 2020

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That isn't amazing, but it is respectable. ROE can give us a view about company quality, but many investors also look to other factors, such as whether there are insiders buying shares. I will like Event Hospitality & Entertainment better if I see some big insider buys. While we wait, check out this free list of growing companies with considerable, recent, insider buying.

The Importance Of Debt To Return On Equity

Most companies need money -- from somewhere -- to grow their profits. That cash can come from issuing shares, retained earnings, or debt. In the first two cases, the ROE will capture this use of capital to grow. In the latter case, the debt required for growth will boost returns, but will not impact the shareholders' equity. In this manner the use of debt will boost ROE, even though the core economics of the business stay the same.

Combining Event Hospitality & Entertainment's Debt And Its 9.5% Return On Equity

Event Hospitality & Entertainment has a debt to equity ratio of 0.33, which is far from excessive. Its very respectable ROE, combined with only modest debt, suggests the business is in good shape. Judicious use of debt to improve returns can certainly be a good thing, although it does elevate risk slightly and reduce future optionality.

The Key Takeaway

Return on equity is useful for comparing the quality of different businesses. Companies that can achieve high returns on equity without too much debt are generally of good quality. If two companies have the same ROE, then I would generally prefer the one with less debt.

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Having said that, while ROE is a useful indicator of business quality, you'll have to look at a whole range of factors to determine the right price to buy a stock. Profit growth rates, versus the expectations reflected in the price of the stock, are a particularly important to consider. So you might want to check this FREE visualization of analyst forecasts for the company.

Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Thank you for reading.


Source: A Note On Event Hospitality & Entertainment Limited's (ASX:EVT) ROE and Debt To Equity



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