By: Andy B. Mayfair
UFC’s corporate owner Endeavor said it will try and raise $712 million in an initial public offering. It will reportedly value the company, which also owns the Miss Universe Pageant, at roughly $8 billion.
Endeavor has been in the process of going public for a while, according to sports.yahoo.com, “but put off its initial summer timeframe to acquire live events company On Location Experiences LLC. In its filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Endeavor has registered more than 22 million shares of Class A common stock shares, which it expects to sell in the range of $30 to $32 per share. If Endeavor sold all of its registered Class A shares at the high end of its target range, the company would raise around $712 million.”
As reported by The Wrap, the company will probably release 19-million-plus Class A shares at the time of the IPO. At the low end of $30 per share, it would collect more than $580 million.
“Content is no longer defined solely by the traditional categories on which our businesses were founded,” the company suggested in its filing. “Television, movies and live events have been joined by others including podcasts, experiences, social media, multiplayer video games and e-sports. Wherever you are in the world and whatever way you define content, Endeavor is likely playing a role.”
“The entertainment company, led by Hollywood super agent Ari Emanuel and Executive Chairman Patrick Whitesell, estimates that it will offer 19.3 million shares at a price range of $30 to $32 a share, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission,” according to the New York Post. “Emanuel — the inspiration for Ari Gold, the hard charging, ruthless and relentless main character of HBO’s “Entourage” — represents some of Hollywood’s biggest stars through WME, including Oprah, Adele, Dwayne Johnson, Rihanna, Drake, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck and Christian Bale.”
The firm is “mounting an ambitious IPO effort at a time of massive transformation for the content and distribution arenas. The company is pitching itself as a next-generation entertainment, lifestyle and sports-focused venture that is enhanced by its deep connections to top talent through its WME and IMG representation arms,” noted Variety. “Endeavor’s financial disclosures to date have drawn mixed reviews from Wall Street analysts, given the company’s high debt load and capital needs following its acquisition spree of the last few years. The company delayed the IPO launch in August in part as it moved to complete the acquisition of On Location Experiences, a live events company.”