Apr 06, 2022, 06:30 ET
Main Event CEO Chris Morris to be named CEO of the combined entity upon closing
DALLAS, April 6, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Main Event Entertainment, Inc. ("Main Event" or the "Company") today announced that Ardent Leisure Group Limited (ASX: ALG) ("Ardent Leisure") and RedBird Capital Partners ("RedBird") have entered into an agreement with Dave & Buster's Entertainment, Inc. (NASDAQ: PLAY) (Dave & Buster's) to acquire Main Event. Upon closing of the transaction (the "Closing"), Main Event's current Chief Executive Officer Chris Morris will be named Chief Executive Officer of Dave & Buster's.
Main Event is one of the fastest-growing family entertainment brands in the country, with 50 operating locations nationwide. Main Event offers the most fun under one roof with state-of-the-art bowling, laser tag, hundreds of arcade games and virtual reality, making it the perfect place for families to partake in shared and memorable experiences.
"We are thrilled to join the Dave & Buster's family," said Chris Morris, Main Event's Chief Executive Officer. "We will undoubtedly benefit from the collective expertise and strong culture of both brands, particularly as we continue to accelerate Main Event's aggressive expansion plans."
The transaction represents a total enterprise value of $835 million and is projected to close later this year, with specific timing subject to customary closing conditions, including approval by Ardent Leisure shareholders and the expiration of the waiting period under the HSR Act. The acquisition is a transformational opportunity to merge two thriving brands that target uniquely different demographics and enhance the breadth of offerings and experiences to each brand's guests. Main Event will continue to operate as a distinct brand serving families of all ages under Dave & Buster's.
Dr Gary Weiss, Chairman of Ardent Leisure, said "Ardent Leisure has partnered with the Main Event brand since 2006 as the company has grown from its Dallas foundations to 50 locations nationwide today. We are particularly proud of our significant involvement in the rejuvenation of Main Event over the last four years and this transaction reflects the culmination of significant value creation that has been achieved by Ardent Leisure and the Main Event management team over this time."
Gerry Cardinale, Managing Partner of RedBird, said "The transaction with Dave & Buster's is a great outcome for Ardent Leisure and for Main Event. We have valued our partnership with Gary Weiss and the Ardent Leisure team as they have worked to create value for shareholders. Our Dallas team worked closely with the Main Event leadership team over the last two years and we are exceptionally pleased that Chris Morris will be appointed CEO of Dave & Buster's when the transaction is completed. We look forward to their continued growth and success as a combined company."
Upon Closing, the combined company will be led by Chris Morris and will create enhanced synergy and unique opportunity of growth for both brands. Chris joined Main Event in 2018 and brought more than 20 years of experience with multisite businesses, including over six years in the family entertainment business. Over Morris' four-year tenure with the brand, Main Event has expanded its center footprint by over 30% and more than doubled EBITDA.
"During my tenure with the brand, I have experienced firsthand the fantastic mission and enormous potential Main Event offers and see this as a transformational opportunity to further strengthen the brand," said Chris Morris, adding, "I'm looking forward to enhancing the offerings and experiences of each brand and providing even more opportunity for our team members. Main Event is a perfect complement to Dave & Buster's, and I feel very honored to lead the growth of both brands."
"As we have come to know Chris Morris, we have been very impressed by his execution capabilities and focus on profitable growth," said Kevin Sheehan, Dave & Buster's Board Chair and Interim Chief Executive Officer. "Chris is a proven and successful transformational leader who is capable of taking the combined organization to the next level. It is clear Main Event has a strong culture that shares many values in common with our own. We very much look forward to joining these two great teams together."
Sheehan will return to his role as Board Chair following the completion of the acquisition.
About Main Event Entertainment, Inc.
Founded in 1998, Dallas-based Main Event operates 50 centers in 17 states across the country. Main Event offers the most fun under one roof with state-of-the-art bowling, laser tag, hundreds of arcade games and virtual reality, making it the perfect place for families to connect and make memories. Main Event is a premier sponsor of Special Olympics International, supporting via fundraising and serving as a venue for Special Olympics events nationwide. Main Event also is a proud partner of the Dallas Cowboys. For more information, visit mainevent.com.
About Dave & Buster's Entertainment, Inc.
Founded in 1982 and headquartered in Coppell, Texas, Dave & Buster's Entertainment, Inc., is the owner and operator of 145 venues in North America that combine entertainment and dining and offer customers the opportunity to "Eat Drink Play and Watch," all in one location. Dave & Buster's offers a full menu of entrées and appetizers, a complete selection of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, and an extensive assortment of entertainment attractions centered around playing games and watching live sports and other televised events. Dave & Buster's currently has stores in 40 states, Puerto Rico, and Canada. For more information, visit daveandbusters.com.
About Ardent Leisure Group Limited
Ardent Leisure (ASX: ALG) is one of Australia's most successful leisure and entertainment groups. The owners and operators of premium leisure assets including Dreamworld, WhiteWater World & SkyPoint theme parks and attractions, as well as Main Event, which is a growing portfolio of family entertainment assets in the United States. Ardent Leisure's businesses occupy dominant positions in affordable, family-friendly, leisure and entertainment categories. As a group, Ardent Leisure has well over 3 million customers annually and has developed extensive communication opportunities to interact and transact with these customers. For more information, visit www.ardentleisure.com
About RedBird Capital Partners
RedBird Capital Partners is a private investment firm focused on building high-growth companies alongside entrepreneurs in its four areas of domain expertise: sports, media, consumer and financial services. Founded by former Goldman Sachs Partner Gerry Cardinale in 2014, RedBird today manages over $6 billion of capital on behalf of a highly curated group of blue-chip global institutional and family office investors. RedBird's network of entrepreneurs is central to its investment sourcing and company-building strategy that helps founders achieve their business objectives and long-term vision. Since inception, RedBird has invested in over 30 platform companies and 80 add on acquisitions with total enterprise value exceeding $30 billion. For more information, please go to www.redbirdcap.com.
The Company cautions that this release contains forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, statements relating to the impact on our business and operations of the coronavirus pandemic and our pending acquisition of Main Event (the "Acquisition"). These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties and, consequently, could be affected by the uncertain and unprecedented impact of the pandemic and new coronavirus variants (including Alpha, Beta, Delta, Omicron and BA.2) on our business and operations and the related impact on our liquidity needs; our ability to continue as a going concern; our ability to consummate the Acquisition on terms favorable to us or at all; our ability to realize the expected benefits of the Acquisition: the possibility that shareholders of Ardent Leisure may not approve the merger agreement; the risk that a condition to closing of the Acquisition may not be satisfied, that either party may terminate the merger agreement or that the closing of the Acquisition might be delayed or not occur at all; potential adverse reactions or changes to business or employee relationships, including those resulting from the announcement or completion of the Acquisition; the diversion of management time on transaction-related issues; the ultimate timing, outcome and results of integrating the operations of the Company and Main Event; the effects of the Acquisition, including the combined company's future financial condition, results of operations, strategy and plans; the ability of the combined company to realize anticipated synergies in the timeframe expected or at all; changes in capital markets and the ability of the combined company to finance the Acquisition and go-forward operations in the manner expected; regulatory approval of the transaction, including the expiration or termination of the waiting period under the HSR Act; the fact that operating costs and business disruption may be greater than expected following the public announcement or consummation of the Acquisition; our ability to obtain waivers, and thereafter continue to satisfy covenant requirements, under our revolving credit facility; our ability to access other funding sources; the implementation and duration of government-mandated and voluntary shutdowns and restrictions; the speed with which our stores safely can be reopened and fully operated and the level of customer demand following reopening and full operations; the economic impact of the pandemic and related disruptions on the communities we serve; our overall level of indebtedness; general business and economic conditions, including as a result of the pandemic; the impact of competition; the seasonality of the Company's business; adverse weather conditions; future commodity prices; guest and employee complaints and litigation; fuel and utility costs; labor costs and availability; changes in consumer and corporate spending, including as a result of the pandemic; changes in demographic trends; changes in governmental regulations; unfavorable publicity, our ability to open new stores, and acts of God. Accordingly, actual results may differ materially from the forward-looking statements, and the Company therefore cautions you against relying on such forward-looking statements. Dave & Buster's intends these forward-looking statements to speak only as of the time of this release and does not undertake to update or revise them as more appropriate information becomes available, except as required by law.
For Investor Relations Inquiries:
Main Event Entertainment, Inc.
Dave & Buster's Entertainment, Inc.
SVP & Chief Financial Officer
RedBird Capital Partners
SOURCE Main Event Entertainment
Share this article