Tag Archives: RMS Titanic Inc

Premier Exhibitions: NASDAQ Notifies Company They Are Not In Compliance With Requirements

Photo:Luis Villa del Campo
Photo:Luis Villa del Campo

NASDAQ recently sent a letter of non-compliance to Premier Exhibitions (NASDAQ:PRXI) regarding the recent director resignations. Specifically they are out of compliance with the audit committee requirements which require the audit committee be comprised of three independent directors. They have to resolve it either at the next annual shareholder’s meeting or by 27 Aug 2015. However if the annual shareholders meeting is held before 23 Feb 2015, then they must show compliance on that date. Four directors resigned on 25 Aug 2014 and were replaced by Jack H. Jacobs and Rick Kraniak on the same day.

Sources:
1. Worth Watching Stocks : Medtronic….(19 Sep 2014, Wall Street Scope)
2. Notice of Delisting or Failure to Satisfy a Continued Listing Rule or S (16 Sep 2014, Yahoo! Finance)


Premier Exhibitions: Major Changes

graphup copyPremier Exhibitions, which owns RMS Titanic Inc and Titanic:The Artifact Exhibition, recently announced three directors had resigned. William M. Adams, Ronald C. Bernard, and Bruce Steinberg resigned on 25 August 2014. They were replaced on the same day by Jack H. Jacobs and Rick Kraniak making it five directors for the company. Jacobs was a previous member of the board fr0m February 2009-February 2011.

What makes this interesting is that Jack Jacobs has both financial and government connections. His previous experience in real estate development investments and finance allowed him to meet with prominent people in and out of government, particularly those with large amounts of capital to invest. He has through his military analyst role at NBC connections at the Pentagon and other places. Rick Kraniak is a retread as well serving on the board from 2005-2008. He has lots media connections thanks to his being a media consultant but also has ties to financial services companies. In short, both of these guys have ties in the financial sector (and in Jacob’s case government as well) that will be used to 1)find sources to invest in the company and other projects; 2) find and connect people that will want to purchase the Titanic collection; 3) finance a sale of the entire company to whole new entity.

It looks like, if one reads these tea leaves correctly, they plan to make interesting changes within the next 12 months. And it is more likely that with these connections that they can sell the Titanic collection.

Source:Premier Exhibitions Announces Board of Director Changes (29 Aug 2014,MarketWatch-via Global Newswire Press Release)


Premiere Exhibitions Reports Lower Earnings In First Quarter Report

falling revenuesPremiere Exhibitions, which owns RMS Titanic Inc, recently announced its earnings for the first fiscal quarter of 2015 saw revenue decrease by 16.2% compared with first quarter last year. According to the press release:

Total revenue decreased 16.2% to $7.5 million compared to $8.9 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2014. Exhibition revenue was negatively impacted by a decrease in admissions revenue as a result of fewer touring exhibitions achieving profit share participation despite comparable average attendance per day. This was only partially offset by higher non-refundable license fees. Merchandise revenue was negatively impacted by a decrease in total attendance for semi-permanent and partnered exhibitions along with a decline in average retail sales per attendee.

Average attendance per exhibition day fell by 9.4% to 462 compared to same quarter last year with 510. They had more exhibition days during the quarter compared to last year. Some costs went down due to lower compensation costs.

So what does it all mean? Well Michael Little the interim president writes:

Our top-line performance reflects weaker demand for Titanic and Bodies in established venues such as Las Vegas and Orlando, lower average ticket prices across all semi-permanent locations, along with fewer of our domestic touring partnered exhibitions achieving profit share participation. These factors led to admission and merchandise sales declines that were only partially offset by higher license fees for rented exhibitions touring internationally. The year over year decrease in total revenues, coupled with rising exhibition costs, yielded a reduction in adjusted EBITDA and a net loss for the Company during the three-month period.

So things are not rosy over at Premiere. Fewer people are going to their exhibitions which translates into fewer merchandise sales. As for the Titanic artifacts collection, the official line is “Premier continues to explore strategic alternatives in conjunction with J.P. Morgan, however, there is nothing definitive to announce at the present time. In addition, the Company expects its independent appraisers to complete new appraisals of the entire Titanic collection, including all the artifacts and intellectual property obtained and developed subsequent to the last appraisal in 2009, over the next month.”

The nugget here is a new appraisal is being undertaken but not just of the Titanic artifacts but the intellectual property developed as part of this collection. That tells me they are trying to sweeten the pot. They will not only get the entire Titanic collection but all the other proprietary materials as well. It also makes sense if you are asking big money people to pony up millions of dollars.

Source: Premier Exhibitions Reports First Quarter Fiscal 2015 Results(15 Jul 2014,Marketwatch-Press Release)

MacHighway - Web Hosting for Mac Users, by Mac Users, Since 1997


Premier Exhibitions Seeking To Sell Company Or Assets

For Sale by Owner SignAccording to Atlanta Business Chronicle, Premier Exhibitions (which owns RMS Titanic, Inc and Titanic:The Artifact Exhibition), reported in a regulatory filing that the board of directors approved a review of “strategic alternatives.”

“The board of directors is working to pursue all appropriate actions to enhance the value of the company for its shareholders,” said Mark A. Sellers, chairman of the board of Premier Exhibitions. “To that end, we have determined that a broad evaluation of strategic alternatives led by a top tier investment bank should be the next step in that process and we are very excited to have engaged a prominent, New York based investment bank as our adviser.”

That sounds like they are preparing to sell the company or perhaps parts of it to other interested parties. With the Titanic artifact sale up in limbo at this point (a consortium backed out since it could not raise the money) and likely no deal in the immediate future, it probably means they would prefer someone else have that headache. Do not be surprised if a sale ends up being done either to a gulf state business or to a Chinese company. Both areas been making moves to capitalize on the Titanic tourist trade.

Source: Premier Exhibitions Investigating ‘Strategic Alternatives’(11 Mar 2014,Atlanta Business Chronicle)


Titanic Exhibition Opens Saturday In South Florida

South Florida Science Center & Aquarium
Photo: WIkipedia

Titanic:The Artifact Exhibition will open at the South Florida Science Center & Aquarium in West Palm Beach on 16 Nov. The exhibit will run till 20 April 2014. For hours and ticket prices go to sfsciencecenter.org. As always plan ahead as tickets often sell out fast at these exhibitions.

Shop Amazon – Holiday Gift Cards with a Free Gift Box and Free One-Day Shipping

Premier Exhibitions Stock Downgraded To Sell By TheStreet

graph downAnalysts at TheStreet has downgraded its rating from hold to sell. According to the analysis, the reasons for the downgrade are:

  • The company has significantly underperformed in net income in the same quarter a year ago. Net income decreased by 102.3% compared to same quarter a year ago.
  • Operating cash flow has decreased.
  • Stock performance is bad. It tumbled 33.49% and company’s earnings per share are down.
  • Return on equity has only slightly improved from same quarter last year. While that is good, its return on equity trails that of others in the same industry.
  • Gross profit margin is still high at 51.21% but still shows a decrease from last year at the same period.

The stock(PRXI) closed down today (14 Oct 2013) at $1.36.

Source: Premiere Exbitions Inc Stock Downgraded (13 Oct 2013, TheStreet)

Premiere Exhibitions:It’s Official-Deal To Sell Artifacts Terminated

For Sale by Owner Sign
Wikipedia

In its most recent financial report, Premiere Exhibitions announced the following:

While both parties have worked diligently to finalize a transaction to transfer the Titanic assets, the Company terminated the non-binding LOI with the Hampton Roads consortium effective today. Mr. Weiser stated, “We always believed that Hampton Roads was an ideal location for the permanent home of the collection and the proposed transaction met our criteria of price, court satisfaction and tax efficiency. However, this group has failed to secure sufficient financing so we believe the Company needs to focus on pursuing alternatives to effect a sale of these assets for the benefit of shareholders. From the Company’s perspective, we view the termination of the LOI not as the end but as a new beginning for the process; one that will get us closer towards finalizing this in a manner that fulfills our shareholders’ expectations and satisfies the requirements of the court.”

The actual names behind this consortium has never been reported but the Virginian-Pilot reports that at one time The Mariners’ Museum in Newport News had been negotiating but could not raise the money.

Premiere also announced its second-quarter revenue was done by 42% from the same period last year. Gross profit dropped by half to $4 million compared to $8.2 million a year ago. Hurricane Sandy hurt when it forced closure of Manhattan Titanic along with more money being spent elsewhere on the 100th anniversary of Titanic sinking.

Sources:
1. Deal For Titanic Artifacts Terminated(10 Oct 2013,Virginian-Pilot)
2.Premier Exhibitions Reports Second Quarter Fiscal 2014 Results(9 Oct 2013,Global Newswire-press release)

Titanic Salvage Sale Appears Either Dead Or Looking For New Buyer

On 28 May, Premier Exhibitions put out its Full Year and Fourth Quarter 2013 Results. For Sale by Owner SignDeep down in the statement was the following:

Update on Titanic Monetization

As previously communicated, on October 15, 2012, the Company entered into a non-binding letter of intent with an entity representing a group of individuals (the “Consortium”) working to effect a purchase of the stock of RMS Titanic, Inc. Since entering into the LOI, Premier has been negotiating exclusively with this group. The entity with whom the Company is negotiating has been soliciting federal, state, and local government entities, as well as philanthropic contributions, to build support to go public with a broader campaign to secure capital necessary to complete a transaction. They continue to request confidentiality until they feel comfortable that there is sufficient support to go public with the project.

Due to the complexity of the transaction and the many elements that are necessary for consummation, the process has taken longer that Premier had hoped. While the Company continues discussions with this group, Premier also recognizes the uncertainty of their completing a transaction and obtaining funding commitments. The Board is therefore considering the full range of strategic and financial alternatives in this regard, which likely will include retaining an investment bank, and will pursue possible paths in parallel.

The complexity of these assets, and the need to comply with the underlying court orders, require that any transaction or arrangement be more carefully structured and executed than a typical transaction. Timing is certainly a factor, but it is not the only factor. The Board and management, together, remain committed to maximizing shareholder value.

This confirms some speculation about who this consortium might be, a group of investors trying to raise capital both with taxpayer money (that is where government money comes from) and private investors (rich people with lots of money like that guy with the hoodie who heads up a social network). You can guess the problem with raising this capital. Not only is the price astronomical, it comes with a major constraint: it stays under U.S. federal court jurisdiction because you are not allowed to sell off any portion of the collection. That means the court will be over your shoulder all the time wanting reports and details of the collection from what is being stored, how it is being carefully preserved, and when it is on display.

So the upshot of it is this: Premiere is formally notifying that they are looking for other interested parties. This may be the reason, according to Seeking Alpha that Premiere’s stock price has dropped. It dropped from $2.30 to $2.10 ion 28 May and dropped much further since. Premiere might consider appealing the judge’s decision to a higher court. And it is entirely possible down the road one of two things happening: the entire collection being shuttered until resolved or the U.S. government seizing it as a national/international treasure under some obscure international treaty or possibly use a congressional resolution passed years ago as the pretext.

Sources:

1. Failed Titanic Sale Won’t Sink Premier Exhibitions(18 June 2013,Seeking Alpha)

2. Premier Exhibitions Reports Full Year and Fourth Quarter 2013 Results (28 May 2013, Global Newswire-Press Release)


Titanic News for 13 Mar 2013

1. Anna Devine writing in Leavenworth Times about dogs aboard Titanic. One interesting story was that of Rigel, a labrador, who was helpful in getting Carpathia to stop. Rigel was swimming in the water ahead of a lifeboat and his barking alerted Rostron to stop his engines before hitting the lifeboat.

Source: Pet Talk: Hero Dog That Survived The Titanic(12 Mar 2013, Leavenworth Times)

2. RMS Titanic, Inc and Premier Exhibitions are suing Thomas Zaller, Imagine Exhibitions, Inc., and Imagine Exhibitions PTE, Ltd for ” conversion, contractual breach, unjust enrichment, fraud and fraudulent inducement, trade dress (Lanham Act), and misappropriation of trade secrets.” The suit, filed late last month in federal court in Atlanta, Georgia asserts Zeller stole intellectual property from its Titanic Exhibition in Singapore in 2011 to use in competing exhibitions in Macau and other places. Premiere seeks damages for the five counts alleged in its complaint. The complaint was filed on 26 Feb 2013 and Judge William Duffey has been assigned the case.

Source: Titanic Lawsuit Launched To Sink Competing Enterprise(8 Mar 2013, Lexology.com)


Titanic Jewels Ending In Atlanta;Orlando Next Stop

Titanic
(Photo courtesy George Behe)

“Jewels of Titanic” collection in Atlanta ends on 6 Jan 2013. It then travels to Orlando’s Titanic: The Experience opening on 11 Jan 2013. The collection will be on display until 12 Mar 2013. For information about hours and to purchase tickets, go to titanictheexperience.com. Admission to the collection is complementary when purchasing ticket for Titanic: The Experience.

Source: Orlando Attractions Magazine (blog), ‘Jewels of Titanic’ to be on display at Titanic: The Experience in January,
29 Dec 2012