Sequential Brands has signed a definitive merger agreement to acquire 100% of the outstanding shares of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc. The Merger improves Sequential’s platform, which is expected to generate nearly $3.75 billion in annual global retail sales from a combined categories of consumer brands.
The terms of the merger agreement have been approved by the boards of directors of both companies. It states that Martha Stewart will continue to be an integral part of the brand that she founded and will serve as Chief Creative Officer. Ms. Stewart will become a significant stockholder of the new public holding company of Sequential and MSLO and will be nominated to serve on its board of directors as of the closing.
Founder Martha Stewart mentioned in a statement “This is a transformational merger for Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, the company I founded in 1997. This merger is positioned to further the growth and expansion of the unique Martha home and lifestyle brand. In 1991, I started a magazine, Martha Stewart Living, which was the first of its kind. Out of our groundbreaking editorial content grew an influential brand which quickly evolved into other media, merchandising and digital platforms and products which have helped consumers, worldwide, live better, more fulfilling lives.” She also said, “With our media business operations now successfully transitioned to Meredith, we now have the opportunity to tap into Sequential’s expertise and resources to expand our merchandising business both domestically and abroad. The Sequential team is smart, hardworking, and understands the power and limitless opportunity of the Martha Stewart brand and its formidable design, editorial and marketing teams. I’m looking forward to working with them.”
Yehuda Shmidman, CEO of Sequential, commented, “Martha Stewart’s impact around the world is staggering, and the empire she founded is unmatched in its industry. In fact, research shows that the Martha Stewart brand has 96% awareness among women in the U.S. and 7 out of 10 women say that Martha has and does influence the way they think about, organize, and manage their homes. Looking ahead, we believe that we can leverage our global activation platform at Sequential in partnership with Martha and her team to develop the next chapter of growth for the Martha Stewart brand. We are honored to have this opportunity and thrilled to be working together with Martha Stewart.”
Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia is a leading provider of the earliest versions of “how-to” information. The company has also inspired consumers with unique lifestyle content and high-quality products. MSLO has approximately 100 million consumers across all media platforms each month and has a growing retail presence in thousands of locations with leading retailers such as Macy’s, The Home Depot, PetSmart, Michaels and Staples. It has earned multiple national magazine awards, 19 Emmys, 4 James Beard Awards, several Webby Awards and more.
William Sweedler, Chairman of Sequential, stated, “This transformational acquisition marks an incredible milestone for Sequential as it not only delivers on the vision we put in place when we founded Sequential, but also sets the stage for the Company’s next phase of growth. Once we close, our run rate will surpass our published three year financial plan, and we will be set up to publish a new three year financial plan that is more than double our current goals for both revenue and adjusted EBITDA.” Mr. Sweedler added, “I look forward to Martha Stewart joining our Board of Directors and I’m excited for our future.”
Dan Dienst, Chief Executive Officer of MSLO also mentioned, “I am truly proud of the hard work that has been done by the team at MSLO, particularly over the past 18 months, to take our iconic, peerless American brand that Martha Stewart has built into its next phase of growth.” He also said, “Against the backdrop of Martha’s vision, an invigorated, strong and competitive MSLO and the new partnership with Sequential and its leadership team, I am excited to help execute on this next chapter of shareholder wealth creation.”
The acquisition, which is expected to close in the second half of 2015 is subject to customary closing conditions and approval by the holders of a majority of the MSLO outstanding common stock not owned directly or indirectly by Martha Stewart or her affiliates. The Company will provide further details on plans for the newly acquired family of brands and financial impact associated with today’s announcement when the transaction is completed.
About Sequential Brands Group, Inc.
Sequential Brands Group, Inc. owns, promotes, markets, and licenses a portfolio of consumer brands to retailers, wholesalers, and distributors in the United States and internationally. It licenses brands in the apparel, footwear, eyewear, and fashion accessories, including Avia, AND1, Ellen Tracy, Revo, Caribbean Joe, DVS, and The Franklin Mint. Sequential Brands Group, Inc. was incorporated in 1982 and is headquartered in New York, New York. Sequential Brands Group stock market evolution: https://finance.yahoo.com/q/pr?s=SQBG+Profile
About Yehuda R. Shmidman
Yehuda R. Shmidman is the President at SBG Universe Brands, LLC. He has been the Chief Executive Officer of Sequential Brands Group, Inc. since November 2012. He has been named in the “40 Under 40” list by Crain’s New York. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from Yeshiva University.
About William Sweedler
Mr. William Sweedler serves as the Chairman of the Board of Sequential Brands Group, Inc. Mr. Sweedler was appointed to the Board of Directors in connection with financing transaction
About Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc.
Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc. is a diversified media and merchandising company founded by Martha Stewart. It is organized into four business segments: Publishing, Internet, Broadcasting media platforms, and Merchandising product lines. MSLO’s business holdings include a variety of print publications, television and radio programming, and e-commerce websites. MSLO stock market evolution http://www.marketwatch.com/investing/stock/mso
About Martha Stewart
Martha Helen Stewart is an American businesswoman, writer, and television personality. As founder of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, she has gained success through a variety of business ventures, encompassing publishing, broadcasting, merchandising, and electronic commerce. She has written numerous bestselling books and hosted two long-running syndicated television shows, Martha, which ran from 2005 to 2012, and Martha Stewart Living, which ran from 1993 to 2005.
About Daniel W. Dienst
Daniel Dienst has been the Chief Executive Officer of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc. since October 2013. He is a graduate of Washington University and received a J.D. from The Brooklyn Law School.