Thu, Feb. 26, 8:37 PM
- A unit of SunTrust Equity Funding (NYSE:STI) has agreed to buy DreamWorks Animation's (NASDAQ:DWA) Glendale, Calif., campus for $185M and lease it back to the studio, a move that should inject quick cash into the faltering moviemaker.
- The terms are a 20-year lease for $13.2M, increasing 1.5% per year.
- After losing nearly a quarter-million dollars in Q4, DreamWorks said it was increasing a revolving line of credit and was preparing to sell its HQ in order to gain liquidity.
- Source 8-K
- Previously: DreamWorks pummeled after brutal quarter; rough year ahead (Feb. 24 2015)
Wed, Feb. 25, 7:11 PM
- Despite an after-hours selloff Tuesday on a tough Q4 report, DreamWorks Animation (NASDAQ:DWA) ended today up 5.9% on more than double average volume.
- Is it possible the worst is behind the studio? The company addressed short-term liquidity issues, using their call to detail its increased revolver and the $185M sale of its headquarters, and the reshuffled leadership is giving some hope to those expecting a refocus on core creative work.
- There are still key challenges ahead even if restructuring goes well: Aside from the one release coming this year, BTIG's Richard Greenfield notes the firm may be way too dependent on Netflix -- "the only thing keeping DreamWorks solvent."
- "DreamWorks filed an 8-K this morning revising their answer to our question admitting that Netflix represented nearly 15% of DreamWorks’ revenues in 2014, which equates to $102M ... Given the increased cadence of television series DreamWorks Animation will deliver to Netflix in 2015, it is not hard to imagine Netflix’s share of DreamWorks’s revenues rising" materially above that.
- Complicating matters, Greenfield thinks the quality of content that DWA is sending Netflix is poor.
Tue, Feb. 24, 8:39 PM
- On its Q4 earnings call, DreamWorks Animation (NASDAQ:DWA) filled in some details on a tough quarter -- one which saw them lose almost a quarter of a million dollars, pre-announce a heavy writedown on The Penguins of Madagascar and two unreleased projects, prepare layoffs of 500 workers, and cut its film production schedule to two films a year instead of three.
- Shares were down 8.7% in late trading.
- Though the plans are to make two movies a year, the studio has just one slated for the "transitional year" of 2015: alien-relocation comedy Home, and it comes out March 27. It's budgeted in the $135M range, while the studio is generally aiming for $120M budgets.
- CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg reshuffled execs, tapping veteran producers Bonnie Arnold and Mireille Soria to lead feature animation, and will take the opportunity to get personally re-engaged with the creative side of the company: "Returning to a much much more active participating role ... has been the silver lining for me" after "without a question, the hardest, most difficult, most painful eight weeks in our 20-year history."
- Saying it's better to get liquidity when you don't need it, the company increased its revolving credit facility to $450M from $400M and extended its term to February 2020.
- The studio also is selling its Glendale headquarters and will enter into a leaseback arrangement for $185M.
- Previously: DreamWorks still lower in wake of heavy layoffs (Jan. 28 2015)
- Previously: DreamWorks Animation confirms layoffs (Jan. 23 2015)
Tue, Feb. 24, 5:39 PM
Tue, Feb. 24, 4:23 PM
- DreamWorks Animation SKG (NASDAQ:DWA) missed on Q4 revenues and earnings expectations, even with advance writedowns on films The Penguins of Madagascar and Mr. Peabody and Sherman.
- The results also featured the impact of its plans for heavy layoffs; DWA took a $210.1M pre-tax charge associated with restructuring.
- Revenue breakdown: Feature film segment, $131.3M (How to Train Your Dragon 2 contributes $66M; Turbo, $5.8M; The Croods, $6.5M; library titles, $46.1M; The Penguins of Madagascar and Mr. Peabody and Sherman did not contribute as they hadn't recouped marketing/distribution costs).
- Television Series and Specials revenue: $50.7M, up 7.7%. Consumer Products, $22.1M, up 77.5%. New Media Segment, $24.9M.
- Conference call at 4:30 p.m ET.
- Shares -0.6% after hours.
- Press release
Tue, Feb. 24, 4:10 PM
Mon, Feb. 23, 5:35 PM
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Wed, Jan. 28, 3:39 PM
- DreamWorks Animation (NASDAQ:DWA) is off 6% -- trading lower for the second day in a row, and down 15.6% since its announcement of layoffs and a smaller film slate.
- The studio said it would lay off 18% of its workforce and concentrate on just two films a year instead of three (only one film, Home, is set for 2015).
- In the wake of some box-office disappointments, CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg says it's time for him to focus more on the studio's core filmmaking business.
- Not all outlooks are grim; along with Piper Jaffray's upgrade, B. Riley has upgraded the stock to Buy, and The Hollywood Reporter notes the studio can draw $250M in credit if needed, along with selling unencumbered assets like its Glendale, Calif., campus for hundreds of millions more.
- Shares are off 44% in the past year.
Fri, Jan. 23, 9:11 AM
Fri, Jan. 23, 7:26 AM
- Cowen Research downgrades DreamWorks Animation (NASDAQ:DWA) to an Underperform rating after revisiting its thesis following the company's downsizing announcement.
- Upside potential is limited, reasons Cowen.
- Piper Jaffray takes the other of the trade, upgrading the studio stock to Overweight and assigning a $26 price target.
- The take from Piper is that future writedowns are unlikely with DreamWorks already throwing in the kitchen sink.
- Previously: Management shake-up at DreamWorks Animation (Jan. 05 2015)
- Previously: DreamWorks Animation confirms layoffs (Jan. 23 2015)
- DWA -1.45% premarket.
Fri, Jan. 23, 2:15 AM
- Confirming earlier reports, DreamWorks Animation (NASDAQ:DWA) announces it will cut 500 jobs, about one-fifth of the work force, as part of a plan to restructure its core feature animation business.
- DWA also says it will lighten its management structure, firing three top executives, and will produce only two feature films a year, instead of three, starting in 2016.
- The studio expects to incur a pre-tax charge of about $290M in connection with the restructuring.
- DWA +1% AH
- Previously: Report: Layoffs on the way at DreamWorks Animation (Jan. 19 2015)
Thu, Jan. 22, 5:36 PM
Mon, Jan. 19, 7:40 PM
Mon, Jan. 5, 2:29 AM
- DreamWorks Animation (NASDAQ:DWA) is shaking up its creative ranks after a series of disappointments at the box office.
- The company’s chief creative officer, Bill Damaschke, is stepping down, while lead producers Bonnie Arnold and Mireille Soria will take over as co-presidents of feature animation.
- The two have produced a total of eight films at DreamWorks that have grossed more than $3.5B.
Dec. 31, 2014, 8:42 AM
- Streaming: Sony (NYSE:SNE), HBO (NYSE:TWX), CBS (NYSE:CBS), and Dish Networks (NASDAQ:DISH) are set to unveil streaming products in 2015. The theory of the companies that the skinny bundles will draw in more cord-cutters and cord-nevers than they will cannibalize current pay-TV subscribers will be put to the test. The rush of streaming options could help or hurt Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) depending upon which analysis an investor leans on.
- Theater traffic rebound: Exhibitors (CNK, RGC, AMC, CKEC, IMAX) and movie studios (LGF, VIA, VIAB, DIS, FOXA, CMCSA, TWX) maintain that the decline in theater attendance in 2014 (-6%) was due to a slate of films light on blockbusters. A bounce is forecast for 2015 with high-profile films such as Avengers: The Age of Ultron, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2, Fifty Shades of Grey, Jurassic World, Spectre (James Bond), and Mission Impossible 5 all set to premiere - along with the reboot of the Star Wars franchise in December. Capex spending on theater upgrades could also help boost in-theater spending and average ticket price for exhibitors.
- Mergers: If regulators allow the Comcast-Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC) and AT&T-DirecTV (NASDAQ:DTV) mergers to sail through it could clear a path for other media combinations, note analysts. Potential buyers include Alibaba (NYSE:BABA), Wanda Group, Softbank (OTCPK:SFTBY), and a TWX-rebuffed 21st Century Fox (NASDAQ:FOXA). Content producers which could be targets include Starz (NASDAQ:STRZA), Lions Gate (NYSE:LGF), DreamWorks Animation (NASDAQ:DWA), AMC Networks (NASDAQ:AMCX), and Scripps Networks (NYSE:SNI). A split-up Madison Square Garden (NASDAQ:MSG) could also be enticing.
Dec. 11, 2014, 6:07 PM
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