Take advantage of the opportunity to soak up some history or explore the great outdoors at any of the 401 national parks for free. The National Park Service is waiving entrance fees January 20 for Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Considering that 2014 marks the 50th anniversary of King’s receiving the Nobel Peace Prize and the passing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the long holiday weekend would be a good time to visit any of the many parks that honor the civil rights leader and that celebrate African American achievements.
SEE ALSO: Fabulous Freebies
Sites associated with King include the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site in Atlanta, the National Historic Trail in Alabama where he led the 1965 Voting Rights March, and the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial and the Lincoln Memorial — where he spoke of his dream for America — in Washington, D.C.
Top Recreation Companies To Invest In Right Now: Smith & Wesson Holding Corp (SWHC)
Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (Smith & Wesson), incorporated on June 17, 1991, is a manufacturer of firearms. The Company manufactures a range of handguns, modern sporting rifles, hunting rifles, black powder firearms, handcuffs, and firearm-related products and accessories for sale to a range of customers, including gun enthusiasts, collectors, hunters, sportsmen, competitive shooters, individuals desiring home and personal protection, law enforcement and security agencies and officers, and military agencies in the United States and globally. It sell its products under the Smith & Wesson brand, the M&P brand, the Thompson/Center brand, and the Walther brand. The Company manufactures its firearm products at its facilities in Springfield, Massachusetts and Houlton, Maine. On July 26, 2012, it sold all of the assets of Smith & Wesson Security Solutions, Inc.
During the fiscal year ended April 30, 2012 (fiscal 2012), the Company introdu ced multiple new handgun and modern sporting rifle models, and one new bolt action rifle platform. The Company’s rifle introductions included the addition of the M&P15 300 Whisper to the Company’s line of modern sporting rifles. As of April 30, 2012, the Company participated in three categories of the long-gun market and both core categories of the handgun market.
The Company manufactures an variety of handgun models that include revolvers and pistols. A revolver is a handgun with a cylinder that holds the ammunition in a series of rotating chambers that are successively aligned with the barrel of the firearm during each firing cycle. There are two general types of revolvers: single-action and double-action. The Company’s small-frame revolvers have been carried by law enforcement personnel and personal defense-minded citizens. The Company’s revolvers are available in a variety of models and calibers, with applications in virtually all profe ssional and personal markets.
The Company’s M! &P15 Series of modern sporting rifles are designed to satisfy the functionality and reliability needs of global military, law enforcement, and security personnel. These rifles are also popular as sporting target rifles and are sold to consumers through the Company’s sporting good distributors, retailers, and dealers. The Company has a range of product portfolio of modern sporting rifles, which includes a lower price-point, sport model, a .22 caliber model, and a fully automatic model designed for the exclusive use of military and law enforcement agencies throughout the world.
The Company manufactures three lines of bolt-action rifles under its Thompson/Center brand consisting of several models in each line. The Company’s hunting rifles are offered in 16 different calibers. Bolt-action rifles operate by the cycling of a bolt handle that allows for both the loading and unloading of rounds through a magazine fed system.
D uring fiscal 2012, the Company introduced the Dimension bolt action rifle platform. Under the Company’s Thompson/Center brand, the Company also offers seven models of American-made single shot black powder, or muzzle loader, firearms. The Company offers eight models of interchangeable, single shot firearm systems that deliver numerous gun, barrel, caliber configurations, and finishes. These systems can be configured as a center-fire rifle, rim-fire rifle, shotgun, black powder firearm, or single-shot handgun for use across the entire range of big- and small-game hunting.
The Company manufactures handcuffs and restraints in the United States. The Company fabricates these products from the carbon or stainless steel.
Smith & Wesson Academy
Through the Smith & Wesson Academy, the Company offers instruction designed to meet the training needs of law enforcement and security customers worldwide. Classes are conducted at the Company’s facility in Springfield, Massachusetts or o! n locatio! n around the world.
The Company’s services include forging, heat treating, finishing, and plating. It provides services to third-party customers.
The Company competes with Ruger,Taurus, Beretta, Glock, Heckler & Koch, Sig Sauer, Springfield Armory, Bushmaster, Rock River, Stag Arms, DPMS, Browning, Marlin, Remington, Ruger, Savage, Weatherby, CVA, Traditions, and Winchester.
- [By Rich Duprey]
After the rapid-fire growth it experienced last year, the firearms industry is ready for a breather. Both Sturm, Ruger (NYSE: RGR ) and Smith & Wesson Holding (NASDAQ: SWHC ) still look like they’re shooting out the lights, but with FBI background checks for gun applications cooling down considerably, investors might want to lower their sights for gunmakers just a bit.
- [By Ben Levisohn]
Shares of Smith & Wesson (SWHC) have gained 17% today after the gun maker reported better-then-forecast earnings.
Bloomberg News has the details on Smith & Wesson’s results:
Earnings per share in the quarter ended Jan. 31, rose 35 percent to 35 cents, the Springfield, Massachusetts company said in a statement yesterday. That beat the 29 cent average estimate of eight analysts in a Bloomberg survey. The company said it estimates full-year earnings per share of between $1.39 and $1.42, increasing its previous estimate of between $1.30 and $1.35.
Sales of handguns, which include the company’s popular M&P pistols, grew 30 percent as the company sought to increase market share, Chief Executive Officer James Debney said in a conference call yesterday. Total revenue grew 7 percent to $145.9 million, surpassing estimates of 142.9 million. Income from continuing operations rose to $20.1 million from $17.5 million.
Wedbush’s Rommel Dionisio and Alicia Reese fret about Smith & Wesson’s retail-sales trends:
In the wake of the Newtown tragedy in Dec. 2012, widespread consumer fears of tightened gun control pulled forward industry demand in early 2013. Now facing unusually difficult y/y comparisons, retail sales trends the past several months have been down significantly y/y (see Figure 1), a trend which should continue through at least May or June. We also note from our recent channel checks that overall retail inventories, which were in short supply last spring, have largely normalized…
S&W’s recent decision to stop selling its most important product line of M&P pistols
in California, effectively shutting down much of its total sales in this major market
rather than comply with the state’s new microstamping law, will likely begin to
impact results in FY15.
Barron’s offers its take here.
Top Recreation Companies To Invest In Right Now: Biglari Holdings Inc (BH)
Biglari Holdings Inc. is a holding company engaged in a range of diverse business activities. The Company, along with its subsidiaries, is engaged in investment management and the franchising/operating of restaurants. The Company’s wholly owned subsidiaries include Steak n Shake Operations, Inc. (Steak n Shake), Western Sizzlin Corporation (Western) and Biglari Capital Corp. (Biglari Capital). Biglari Holdings, as a capital allocating vehicle, is also in the business of owning other businesses in whole and in part. In February 2014, Biglari Holdings Inc and Alpha Media Group announced that the wholly owned subsidiary of Biglari Holdings has acquired MAXIM.
On April 30, 2010, the Company completed the acquisition of Biglari Capital Corp. (Biglari Capital). On March 30, 2010, the Company, through its wholly owned subsidiary, Grill Acquisition Corporation, completed the acquisition of Western.
Steak n Shake
The Company is engaged in t he ownership, operation, and franchising of Steak n Shake restaurants. Steak n Shake is a American brand serving burgers and milk shakes. Steak n Shake offers its patrons full-service dining with counter and dining room seating, as well as drive-thru and carry-out service. During the fiscal year ended September 29, 2010 (fiscal 2010), counter and dining room sales represented approximately 60% of the sales mix, while sales for off-premises dining represent approximately 40% of the sales mix.
The Company is engaged in the franchising of restaurants. Western Sizzlin offers full service dining of signature steak dishes, as well as other classic American menu items. Western Sizzlin also operates other concepts, Great American Steak & Buffet, and Wood Grill Buffet consisting of hot and cold food buffet style dining.
- [By Ben Levisohn]
Shares of Cracker Barrel have gained 0.9% to $113.29 and Biglari Holdings (BH), Sandar Biglari’s holding company, has fallen 0.4% to $516.96, on a day when DineEquity has advanced 1% to $85.03, Red Robin Gourmet Burgers (RRGB) has risen 0.5% to $76.64 and Denny’s (DENN) is up 0.7% at $7.45.
- [By Michael Lewis]
Buffett-inspired Biglari Holdings (NYSE: BH ) is not nearly as followed as its model business, Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK-B ) , but investors in the latter would be wise to keep an eye on the moves of this restaurant-focused holdings company.
- [By Dan Caplinger]
As in past years, most of the attention around Cracker Barrel’s stock lately has come from the ongoing battle between the company and Biglari Holdings (NYSE: BH ) , which owns roughly 20% of Cracker Barrel’s shares. Back in February, the company offered to buy back Biglari’s stock in hopes that it could avoid a third consecutive proxy fight to try to get Biglari CEO Sardar Biglari onto the board of directors. But Biglari rejected Cracker Barrel’s offer.
Top Recreation Companies To Invest In Right Now: mCig Inc (MCIG)
MCIG, INC. (mCig), incorporated on December 30, 2010, is a development-stage company. The Company is a technology company. The Company focused on two long-term secular trends sweeping the globe: the decriminalization and legalization of marijuana for medicinal or recreational purposes and the adoption of electronic vaporizing cigarettes (eCigs).
The mCig provides a smoking experience by heating (not burning) plant material, waxes, and oils delivering a smoother inhalation experience. As of October 31, 2013, the Company did not generate any revenues.
- [By Joel Elconin]
One such example is mCig (OTC: MCIG).
“MCIG started off with a $10 vape pen,” he said. “They almost envision themselves as being the Apple of the industry. CEO and founder Paul Rosenberg [is] strictly a businessman, he owns about half the stock. He then brought on some talent and gave them his stock to help the company. Why? Because he knows the stock is overvalued, but if you can [evolve a company] without diluting your shareholders, that’s what I mean by doing the right thing.”
- [By Jason Shubnell]
He also discussed MCIG (OTC: MCIG), a relatively new company that has developed a legal marijuana vaporizer, similar to the e-cig. The mCig heats plant material instead of burning it, providing a superior method of consumption that is much smoother, according to the company’s website. The product sells for $10, while the stock itself has a market cap of $35 million.
Top Recreation Companies To Invest In Right Now: Manchester United PLC (MANU)
Manchester United plc, formerly Manchester United Ltd., incorporated on April 30, 2012, is engaged in the operations of professional sports team. It provides manchester united a platform to generate revenue from multiple sources, including sponsorship, merchandising, product licensing, new media & mobile, broadcasting and matchday. The Company had three principal sectors: Commercial, Broadcasting and Matchday.
Within the Commercial revenue sector, the Company had three revenue streams which include sponsorship revenue; retail, merchandising, apparel and product licensing revenue; and new media and mobile revenue. Retail, Merchandising, Apparel and Product Licensing, it markets and sells sports apparel, training and leisure wear and other clothing featuring the Manchester United brand on a global basis. In addition, it also sells other licensed products, from coffee mugs to bed spreads, featuring the Manchester United brand and trademar ks. These products are distributed through Manchester United branded retail centers and e-commerce platforms, as well as its partners’ wholesale distribution channels.
The Company retails, merchandizes, apparel & product licensing business is managed by Nike, who pays it a minimum guaranteed amount and a share of the business’ cumulative profits. It has formed mobile telecom partnerships in 44 countries. In addition, it markets content directly to its followers through its Website, www.manutd.com, and associated mobile properties.
The Company generates revenue from distribution and broadcasting of live football content. Broadcasting revenue is derived from the global television rights relating to the Premier League, Champions League and other competitions. In addition, its global television channel, MUTV, delivers Manchester United programming to 54 countries around the world. Broadcasting includes all revenue covering do mestic and international television and radio rights. Broadc! asting revenue including, in some cases, prize money received by it in respect of the various competitions.
The Company generates revenue during the matchday from the Old Trafford, a sports venue.
Other Matchday revenue includes matchday catering, event parking, program sales as well as membership and travel, Manchester United Museum revenue and a share of the ticket revenue from away matches in domestic cup competitions. Matchday revenue also includes revenue from other events hosted at Old Trafford, including other sporting events (including football matches as part of the London 2012 Olympic Games and the annual Rugby Super League Grand Final), music concerts and entertainment events.
- [By Rich Smith]
This series, brought to you by Yahoo! Finance, looks at which upgrades and downgrades make sense and which ones investors should act on. Today, our headlines feature upgrades for mini-industrialist Stratasys (NASDAQ: SSYS ) and for remote computer access specialist LogMeIn (NASDAQ: LOGM ) but a downgrade for publicly traded soccer club Manchester United (NYSE: MANU ) . Let’s take them one at a time, beginning with…
- [By Eric Volkman]
Manchester United (NYSE: MANU ) footballers will soon be wearing Aon’s (NYSE: AON ) name on their jerseys, after the two companies completed a long-term expansion to their sponsorship deal. Starting from July 1, the club’s training facility is to be renamed the Aon Training Complex, and its distinctive jerseys will carry the Aon logo.
- [By Rich Smith]
Three months later and an ocean away, another “football” team, British soccer club Manchester United (NYSE: MANU ) , had a different story to tell. On Monday, April 22, 2013, Man Utd claimed their 20th league title, beating Aston Villa 3-0 to win the English Premier League Championship .
Top Recreation Companies To Invest In Right Now: Dale Jarrett Racing Adventure Inc (DJRT)
Dale Jarrett Racing Adventure, Inc., incorporated on November 24, 1998, offers entertainment based oval driving schools and events. The Company owns several National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) type racecars. These classes are conducted at various racetracks throughout the country. As of December 31, 2011, the Company owned 15 racecars, and had purchased six additional racecars for its Las Vegas hub. These racecars are classified as stock cars and are equipped for oval or round tracks only.
The Company offers five types of ride or drive programs for individuals and corporations. The Qualifier is a three lap ride with a professional driver, which lasts about five minutes, depending on the length of the track. The Season Opener is a half day training class culminating in the student driving 10 laps. The Rookie Adventure and Happy Hour are also half day driving classes with the students driving 20 or 30 laps, respectively. The Advanced Stock C ar Adventure is a full day 60 lap class. The main purpose of each event is the thrill of actually driving the race car. It owns a Miller Semi Tractor Trailer to haul the cars from track to track. The Company also offers a range of add-on sale items, including compact disks (CDs) from its adventure cam located in the car, clothing, souvenirs and photography.
The Company competes with Richard Petty Driving Experience.
- [By Peter Graham]
Small cap stocks Alliance Creative Group Inc (OTCMKTS: ACGX), Dale Jarrett Racing Adventure Inc (OTCMKTS: DJRT), Inscor Inc (OTCMKTS: IOGA) and Solar Thin Films Inc (OTCMKTS: SLTZ) have all been getting some attention lately in various investment newsletters and it should come as no surprise that two out of four of these stocks have been the subject of paid promotions – which tend to benefit traders. However, two out of four of these stocks also have pretty good financials for being small cap OTC stocks and that might make them attractive to investors with a long term time horizon. So which of these stocks might make traders some profits in the short term and investors some profits over the longer term? Here is a closer look to help you decide:
Top Recreation Companies To Invest In Right Now: SeaWorld Entertainment Inc (SEAS)
SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc., incorporated on October 2, 2009, is a theme park and entertainment company. The Company is engaged in delivering personal, interactive and educational experiences that blend imagination with nature and enable its customers to celebrate, connect with and care for the natural world. The Company own or license a portfolio of globally recognized brands including SeaWorld, Shamu and Busch Gardens. The Company has built a diversified portfolio of 11 destination and regional theme parks that are grouped in key markets across the United States. Its theme parks feature a diverse array of rides, shows and other attractions with broad demographic appeal which deliver memorable experiences and a strong value proposition for its guests. In addition to its theme parks, it has recently begun to leverage its brands into media, entertainment and consumer products.
The Company generates revenue primarily from selling admission to its theme parks a nd from purchases of food, merchandise and other spending. During the year ended December 31, 2012, it hosted more than 24 million guests in its theme parks, including approximately 3.5 million international guests from over 55 countries and six continents. In 2012, the Company opened new attractions in seven of its theme parks. In November 2012, the Company acquired Knott’s Soak City, a standalone Southern California water park, from an affiliate of Cedar Fair L.P. The Company’s products and services include Admission Tickets, Theme Park Operations, Culinary Offerings , Merchandise , Licensing and Consumer Products , Group Events and Conventions and Corporate Sponsorships and Strategic Alliances.
Admission Tickets, which generate most of its revenue from selling admission to its theme parks. The Company also offers a Fun Card at select theme parks that allows additional visits throughout that calendar year. In addition, visitors can purchase vacation packa ges with preferred hotels, behind-the-scenes tours, specialt! y dining packages and front of the line access to enhance their experience. Theme Park Operations delivers a level of service, safety and security at its theme parks. It comprised of rides, shows and attractions operations, safety, security, environmental, water park and guest arrival services (including parking, tolls, admissions, guest relations, entry and exit), the theme park operations team manages the planning and execution of the overall theme park experience on a daily basis.
Culinary Offerings delivers a variety of high quality, creative and memorable culinary experiences to its guests. Culinary operations are strategically organized into five key guest-oriented disciplines designed to drive in-park per capita spending: restaurants, catering, carts and kiosks, specialty snacks and vending. The Company’s culinary team focuses on providing creative menu offerings that appeal to our diverse guest base. Merchandise offers guests the opportunity to captur e memories through its products and services, including through traditional retail shops, game venues and customized photos and videos. It focuses on effort to leverage the emotional connection of the theme park experiences, capitalize on trends and optimize brand alignment with its merchandise product offerings.
Licensing and Consumer Products capitalize on its brands, it has begun to leverage its intellectual property and content through media and consumer strategic licensing arrangements. It extended the reach of its brands through outbound media licensing in areas such as films, television programs and digital e-books, as well as its first-ever multi-platform mobile app game, TurtleTrek, which launched on iTunes in November 2012. Group Events and Conventions host a variety of different group events, meetings and conventions at its theme parks both during the day and at night. Its venues offer indoor and outdoor space for meetings, special events, entertainme nt shows, picnics, teambuilding events, group tours and spec! ial group! ticket packages. Park buy-outs allow groups to enjoy exclusive itineraries, including meetings and shows, up-close encounters with animals and behind the scenes tours. Corporate Sponsorships and Strategic Alliances seek to secure long-term corporate sponsorships and strategic alliances with companies and brands that share its core values, deliver brand marketing value and influence and drive mutual business gains. Its current corporate sponsors include, among others, Southwest Airlines, which has been a sponsor for over 20 years, and The Coca-Cola Company.
SeaWorld is recognized as the marine-life theme park brand in the world. Its SeaWorld theme parks, located in Orlando, San Antonio and San Diego, each rank among the most highly attended theme parks in the industry and offer up-close interactive experiences and a variety of live performances, including shows featuring Shamu in specially designed amphitheaters. It offers its guests numer ous animal encounters, including the opportunity to work with trainers and feed marine animals, as well as themed thrill rides and theatrical shows that creatively incorporate its animal collection.
Its Busch Gardens theme parks are family-oriented destinations designed to immerse guests in foreign geographic settings. They are renowned for their beauty and landscaping and gardens and allow its guests to discover the natural side of fun by offering a family experience featuring a range of attractions and rollercoasters in a richly-themed environment. Busch Gardens Tampa presents its collection of animals from Africa, Asia and Australia.
Its Aquatica branded water parks are premium, family-oriented destinations that are based in a South Seas-themed tropical setting. Aquatica water parks build on the aquatic theme of its SeaWorld brand and feature high-energy rides, water attractions, white-sand beaches ande entertaining presentation of marine and terrestrial an! imals. Th! e Company positions its Aquatica water parks as companion water parks to its SeaWorld theme parks in Orlando and San Diego and it has an Aquatica water park situated within its SeaWorld San Antonio theme park.
Discovery Cove is a reservations only, all-inclusive, marine-life day resort adjacent to SeaWorld Orlando. Discovery Cove offers guests personal, signature experiences, including the opportunity to swim and interact with dolphins, take an underwater walking reef tour and enjoy pristine white-sand beaches and landscaped private cabanas. Discovery Cove presently limits its attendance to approximately 1,300 guests per day and features premium culinary offerings in order to provide guests with a more relaxed, intimate and high-end luxury resort experience.
Sesame Place is the only United States theme park based entirely on the television show Sesame Street. It is located between Philadelphia an d New York City, Sesame Place is a destination where parents and children can share in the spirit of imagination and experience Sesame Street together through whirling rides, water slides, colorful shows and furry friends. In addition, it has introduced Sesame Street brands in its other theme parks through Sesame Street-themed rides, shows, children’s play areas and merchandise.
The Company competes with The Walt Disney Company, Universal Studios, Six Flags, Cedar Fair, Merlin Entertainments and Hershey Entertainment and Resorts Company.
- [By Rick Aristotle Munarriz]
Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images From a new player in the fast food market cleverly attacking the leader’s mascot to a social giant bringing out its inner shutterbug, here’s a rundown of the week’s smartest moves and biggest blunders in the business world. Twitter (TWTR) — Winner There are limitations inherent with Twitter, and the 140-character cutoff is just scratching the surface. Twitter’s had its monetization challenges because it’s not as interactive with multimedia, but that’s taking a step in the right direction this week with the hashtag hasher sprucing up its offerings for shutterbugs. Twitter will now allow Twitter users to tag fellow users in photographs. Twitter will also let someone include as many as four photographs in a single post. We live in visual times, and while Vine and Twitter’s original photo platform are decent, it’s great to see the dot-com darling take things up a notch. King Digital Entertainment (KING) — Loser There are tens of millions of Candy Crush Saga players on any given day, but apparently most of them would rather be matching candy pieces than buying into the game’s developer. Game creator King Digital Entertainment went public at $22.50 on Wednesday, and unlike many of the dot-com darlings that have pulled off blazing IPOs, the market spat the Candy Crush maker out. The stock opened lower and closed its first day of trading down 16 percent, at $19. It was easy to see this coming. Many key performance metrics had peaked at King during last year’s third quarter. Oculus — Winner Few figured that Facebook (FB) would rush into any big-ticket purchases after its $19 billion deal for Whatsapp, but then the social networking leader announced the purchase of Oculus for $2 billion. Oculus is a virtual reality headwear maker that started drawing attention as a Kickstarter campaign. Critics have pointed out that the backers of that crowdfunding campaign that raised $2.5 million on Kickstarter will get nothing out of this deal.
- [By Rick Aristotle Munarriz]
Getty Images/Orlando Sentinel/MCT/Joshua C. Cruey SeaWorld Entertainment (SEAS) may not have a lot of fans among the growing number of people who have watched the scathing documentary “Blackfish,” but it’s hard to say that protestors are leaving much of a dent. The marine life park operator posted another period of revenue growth during the holiday quarter, and it’s targeting positive growth for 2014. It seems as if SeaWorld has survived the worst of the fallout behind last year’s documentary, which took it to task for keeping killer whales in captivity. The Splash Zone Includes Losing Some Performers During last week’s earning’s announcement, SeaWorld reported that revenue climbed 3 percent during the fourth quarter as well as for all of 2013. Attendance fell 4.1 percent last year, but revenue is growing because those that are showing up are spending more to get in and spending more once they are inside. However, if one would think SeaWorld’s attendance would deteriorate as more people were exposed to “Blackfish,” reality has painted a different picture. Attendance across its empire of theme, amusement, and water parks dipped just 1.4 percent during the period — and actually increased at its SeaWorld-branded parks. This is a welcome surprise. This is, after all, the first full quarter since “Blackfish” was broadcast on CNN and became a streaming entry on Netflix (NFLX). The furor against keeping orcas in captivity to entertain park guests should be growing, but the numbers don’t bear that out. Successful grassroots campaigns forced many musical acts to bow out of an annual SeaWorld music festival, and a California lawmaker is proposing a bill that would ban killer whales from being held in captivity. There are two sides to every story, and just because the “Blackfish” documentary filmmakers went first doesn’t mean that they will have the final say on public perception. SeaWorld has refuted many of the claims made in the movie. Diving Into a New Year an
Top Recreation Companies To Invest In Right Now: IMAX Corp (IMAX)
IMAX Corporation, incorporated on January 1, 2002, together with its wholly owned subsidiaries, is an entertainment technology companies, specializing in motion picture technologies and presentations. The Company’s customers who purchase lease or otherwise acquire the IMAX theatre systems are theatre exhibitors, which operate commercial theatres, museums, science centers, and destination entertainment sites. IMAX theatre systems combine the Company’s digital re-mastering movie conversion technology (IMAX DMR), projectors with equipment and automated theatre control systems, sound system components, screens, theatre geometry, and theatre acoustics.
The Company’s principal business is the design, manufacture and delivery of theater systems (IMAX theater systems). The Company’s customers who purchase, lease or otherwise acquire the IMAX theater systems through joint revenue sharing arrangements are theater exhibitors that operate commercial theaters (part icularly multiplexes), museums, science centers, or destination entertainment sites. The Company does not own IMAX theaters, but licenses the use of its trademarks along with the sale, lease or contribution of the IMAX theater system.
IMAX Systems, Theater System Maintenance and Joint Revenue Sharing Arrangements
The Company provides IMAX theater systems to customers on a sales or long-term lease basis with an initial 10-year term. These agreements consist of initial fees and ongoing fees (which can include a fixed minimum amount per annum and contingent fees in excess of the minimum payments) and maintenance and extended warranty fees. The initial fees vary depending on the system configuration and location of the theater and generally are paid to the Company in installments between the time of system signing and the time of system installation. Ongoing fees are paid over the term of the contract, commencing after the theater system has been instal led and are generally equal to the greater of a fixed minimu! m amount per annum or a percentage of boxoffice receipts. The Company also provides IMAX theater systems to customers under joint revenue sharing arrangements, pursuant to which the Company provides the IMAX theater system in return for a portion of the customer’s IMAX box-office receipts, and in some cases concession revenues and/or a small upfront or initial payment. As at December 31, 2012, the Company had 316 theaters in operation under joint revenue sharing arrangements.
Production and Digital Re-Mastering (IMAX DMR)
The Company’s technology digitally re-masters Hollywood films into IMAX digital cinema package format or 15/70-format film. IMAX DMR digitally enhances the image resolution of motion picture films for projection on IMAX screens while maintaining or enhancing the visual clarity and sound quality to levels for which The IMAX Experience is known. This technology enabled the IMAX theater network to release Hollywood films simultane ously with domestic release. In a typical IMAX DMR film arrangement, the Company will receive a percentage of net box-office receipts of any commercial films released in the IMAX network, which is generally 10-15%, from a film studio for the conversion of the film to the IMAX DMR format and access to its distribution platform. During the year ended December 31, 2012, 35 films converted through the IMAX DMR process were released to theaters within the IMAX network. As of December 31, 2012, the Company released 23 IMAX DMR titles to theaters within the IMAX network. During 2012, five local language IMAX DMR films were released, including one French film, Houba! On the Trail of the Marsupilami: The IMAX Experience and four Chinese IMAX DMR titles: Tai Chi 0: An IMAX 3D Experience, Tai Chi Hero: An IMAX 3D Experience, Back to 1942: The IMAX Experience and CZ12: The IMAX Experience.
Film Distribution and Post-Production
The Company is also a distributor of large-format films, primarily catering to its institution! al theate! r partners. The Company generally distributes films, which it produces or for which it has acquired distribution rights from independent producers. The Company generally receives a percentage of the theater box-office receipts as a distribution fee. Films produced by the Company are typically financed through third parties, whereby the Company will generally receive a film production fee in exchange for producing the film and a distribution fee for distributing the film. The Company utilizes third-party funding for the majority of original films it produces and distributes. In 2012, the Company, along with Warner Bros. Pictures (WB) and MacGillivray Freeman Films (MFF) released an original title, To the Artic 3D: An IMAX 3D Experience.
The Company derives a small portion of its revenues from other sources. As of December 31, 2012, the Company had four owned and operated theaters. In addition, the Company has a commercial arrangement with one theater resulting i n the sharing of profits and losses and provides management services to two theaters. The Company also rents its two dimensional (2D) and three dimensional (3D) large-format film and digital cameras to third party production companies. The Company maintains cameras and other film equipment and also offers production advice and technical assistance to both documentary and Hollywood filmmakers. Additionally, the Company generates revenues from the sale of after-market parts and 3D glasses. As of December 31, 2012, approximately 54.2% of IMAX systems in operation were located in the United States and Canada. As at December 31, 2012, approximately 45.8% of IMAX systems in operation were located within international markets (other than the United States and Canada).
- [By Rick Aristotle Munarriz]
Frederic J. Brown, AFP/Getty Images Moviegoers aren’t heading out the multiplex the way they used to, but that doesn’t mean that Hollywood is toast. AMC Entertainment (AMC) reported quarterly results Tuesday. The nation’s leading exhibitor — 345 theaters with 4,976 screens — went public two months ago. The headline numbers are positive. Revenue increased a better than expected 2.3 percent to $713 million. Profitability also expanded nicely. However, revenue increased as a result of a 5.5 percent increase in ticket prices and a 3.7 percent uptick in concessions purchased by patrons. Obviously you don’t see those kind of gains against a mere 2.3 percent lift in revenue without dealing with more empty seats, and that’s just what happened. There was a 3.2 percent decline in attendance. AMC’s ticket takers welcomed 50.4 million guests during the holiday quarter, well below the 52.1 million guests that it entertained a year earlier. That’s bad, and what makes things worse is that it had fewer theaters — from continuing operations — a year earlier. It wouldn’t be wise to hold out for a Hollywood ending. Customers Want Bigger and Better Things Apologists will argue that it wasn’t a bumper crop of movies hitting theaters, but that’s not accurate at all. Last year’s biggest box office winner — “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” — opened in November. Disney’s “Frozen” also opened ahead of the holidays, and it’s the family entertainment giant’s biggest non-Pixar earner since 1994’s “The Lion King.” Moviegoers still come out for the big movies, and they’re also willing to pay more for a premium setting. IMAX (IMAX) reported blowout quarterly results a few days earlier. IMAX screens rang up a record $244 million in ticket sales worldwide. IMAX is also closing out the year with a record backlog of 384 commercial theaters to deploy. RealD (RLD) is also holding up nicely as a leading provider of 3-D systems for exhibitors. It enjoyed a major boost with “Gravity,” a
- [By Chad Fraser] Christmas is a time for good cheer, reflection and spending time with friends and family. Here are four stocks that reflect the season, ranging from Christmas tree providers to toymakers and beyond:
Weyerhaeuser (NYSE: WY): Some little-known Christmas tree facts: there are 25 million to 30 million sold in the U.S. every year, with about 350 million currently growing in the country. It takes an average of seven years to grow a Christmas tree to its proper height.
Most Christmas tree farms are privately owned, but they need to get good seedlings from somewhere, so many turn to timber company Weyerhaeuser, which grows the most popular species—including balsam fir, Douglas fir, Scotch pine and white pine.
Weyerhaeuser controls about 6 million acres of timberland, with about a third of that in the Pacific Northwest, which is America’s most prolific lumber-producing region thanks to its cool, damp climate and considerable rainfall.
“The fact that it’s the largest timber producer in the Pacific Northwest makes Weyerhaeuser extremely attractive, because the company’s location gives it easy export access to China,” w rote Investing Daily analyst Benjamin Shepherd in a December 13 article. “This location also leaves it well-placed to pick up the supply slack created by lower production caps in Canada, which is typically a key Chinese supplier.”
Mattel (NYSE: MAT) is proving that the most traditional toys you can think of—dolls—still have a place under the tree, even in the digital age. As we reported on October 16, Mattel’s doll lineup was the main reason why its third-quarter earnings surged past Wall Street estimates.
The company’s strength is centered on its ability to come up with popular new dolls while reimagining the tried-and-true. Right now, its Monster High franchise, which it rolled out in 2010, is stealing the show: the brand’s p
- [By Rick Aristotle Munarriz]
Getty Images From a popular multiplex operator going public to a retailer getting hacked at the worst possible time, here’s a rundown of the week’s best and worst news from the business world. Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG) — Winner Chipotle is getting a new stamp in its ethnic cuisine passport. Having mastered Mexican, it was already giving Asian a shot with its new ShopHouse chain. And now, we can add Italian to its map after Chipotle revealed this week that it’s a financial backer of Pizzeria Locale. The fast casual concept gives pizza a Chipotle-like makeover with folks ordering at the counter, customizing their 11-inch pies along the assembly line, after which they are baked in a speedy oven that serves up tasty pies in just two minutes. Chipotle’s growing just fine with its flagship burrito chain, but it never hurts to diversify before expansion-fueled growth plateaus, or tastes change. Target (TGT) — Loser Holiday shopping at Target may ultimately prove to more trouble than bargain seekers were hoping for this season. The cheap chic discounter revealed that hackers installed software that stole the info on more than 40 million credit and debit card transactions from Nov. 27 through Dec. 15. This is naturally going to be bad news for those that had their plastic compromised. Everyone that shopped at Target this season is being advised to carefully look over their statements. However, it’s also very bad for the retailer at the worst possible time. Shoppers may not be too comfortable heading into Target during these last few shopping days before Christmas. AMC Entertainment (AMC) — Winner Lights! Camera! IPO action! It may not have been the blockbuster IPO of the year, but the debut of the leading movie theater chain proved to be a success this week. AMC Entertainment went public at $18, opening 7 percent higher and staying above its IPO price. The leading exhibitor operates 343 movie theaters housing 4,950 screens. AMC entertains 200 million guests
- [By Sue Chang]
Imax (IMAX) : The stock is up 27% year to date. The movie will be shown at select IMAX 3D theaters. The stock is rated a buy with a price target of $35 at B. Riley & Co.
Top Recreation Companies To Invest In Right Now: Thomas Cook Group plc (TCG)
Thomas Cook Group plc is a United Kingdom-based leisure travel company. The Company operates in 19 source markets and operates under brands, including Thomas Cook, Neckermann, Condor, Jet tours, Ving, Spies and Tja reborg. Thomas Cook directly or indirectly controls a number of subsidiaries. The Company also has investments in other companies. It operates a combined fleet of 87 aircraft. The Company’s operating structure comprises four segments which are principally organized according to the location of the customer’s origin. These are United Kingdom, Continental Europe, Northern Europe and Airlines Germany. Advisors’ Opinion:
- [By Sofia Horta e Costa]
Rio Tinto Group climbed 2.9 percent after saying it will cost $3 billion less than projected to increase iron ore output capacity. Boliden AB (BOL) added 3.1 percent as Morgan Stanley raised its rating on the stock. Thomas Cook Group Plc (TCG) rose 13 percent after the travel operator posted a 49 percent increase in full-year earnings. British tobacco companies slipped following a report that after a U.K. minister announced the review of cigarette packaging.
- [By Sarah Jones]
Thomas Cook Group Plc (TCG) dropped 7.7 percent to 116.1 pence. The tour operator admitted new shares to its listing this week. The company last month announced plans to raise 425 million pounds in a rights offer and share placement.
- [By Tom Stoukas]
Thomas Cook (TCG) lost 6.6 percent to 145.3 pence, its biggest decline since Sept. 5. The tour operator said winter bookings started more slowly than last year across most markets due to geopolitical events and warm weather in Europe.
Top Recreation Companies To Invest In Right Now: Callaway Golf Co (ELY)
Callaway Golf Company, incorporated on May 7, 1999, together with its subsidiaries, designs, manufactures and sells golf clubs (drivers, fairway woods, hybrids, irons, wedges and putters) and golf balls, and also sells golf accessories (such as golf bags, golf gloves, headwear, towels, umbrellas and travel gear) under the Callaway Golf and Odyssey brand names. The Company sells pre-owned golf products through its Website, www.callawaygolfpreowned.com. In addition, it sells Callaway Golf and Odyssey products direct to consumers online through its Websites shop.callawaygolf.com and www.odysseygolf.com. The Company also licenses its trademarks and service marks in exchange for a royalty fee to third parties for use on golf related accessories, including apparel, footwear, eyewear, rangefinders and practice aids. Its products are sold in the United States and in approximately 100 countries around the world.
The Company designs, manufactures and sells golf clubs an d golf balls, and designs and sells golf accessories. The Company’s products are designed for golfers of all skill levels, both amateur and professional. The Company’s principal products include Drivers, Fairway Woods and Hybrids; Irons; Putters; Golf Balls, and Accessories, Softgoods and Other. Drivers, Fairway Woods and Hybrids product category includes sales of the Company’s drivers, fairway woods and hybrid products, which are sold under the Callaway Golf brand. Irons include sales of the Company’s irons and wedges, which are sold under the Callaway Golf brand. Putters include sales of the Company’s putters, which are sold under the Odyssey brand. Golf Balls includes sales of the Company’s golf balls, which are sold under the Callaway Golf and Strata brands. Accessories, Softgoods and Other includes sales of golf bags, golf gloves, golf footwear, rangefinders, golf apparel, packaged club sets, headwear, towels, umbrellas, eyewear and other accessories, as wel l as sales of pre-owned products through www.callawaygolfpre! owned.com. Additionally, this product category includes royalties from licensing of the Company’s trademarks and service marks on products such as golf apparel, golf footwear, rangefinders and practice aids.
The Company competes with TaylorMade, Ping, Acushnet, Puma, SRI Sports Limited, Mizuno, Bridgestone, and Nike.
- [By Greg Pugh] Callaway Golf Company (NYSE: ELY) has forged a reputation as a leader in golf equipment innovation. However, the company started sliding in 2008 due to recession, while the brand image fell as well. US industry golf sales hit a floor and flattened just above $1.8 billion between 2009 and 2011, but have started to rebound in the last two years.
- [By Jayson Derrick]
Analysts at Raymond James upgraded Callaway Golf (NYSE: ELY) to Strong Buy from a previous Market Perform with a price target of $9.50. The analysts are confident in the company’s turnaround prospects. Shares gained 7.16 percent, closing at $8.53.
- [By Charley Blaine]
Callaway Golf (NYSE: ELY) was also up, gaining 19.83 percent to $8.70 after the company reported a narrower third-quarter loss and lifted its 2013 forecast. DA Davidson upgraded the stock from Neutral to Buy and lifted its price target from $7.50 to $11.
Top Recreation Companies To Invest In Right Now: TripAdvisor Inc (TRIP)
TripAdvisor, Inc. (TripAdvisor), incorporated on July 20, 2011, is an online travel research company, enabling users to plan and have a trip. TripAdvisor features reviews and advice on hotels, resorts, flights, vacation rentals, vacation packages and travel guides. TripAdvisor’s travel research platform features reviews and opinions from its community of travelers about destinations, accommodations (hotels, bed and breakfasts, specialty lodging and vacation rentals), restaurants and activities worldwide, through its TripAdvisor brand. TripAdvisor Websites include tripadvisor.com in the United States and versions of the Website in 30 countries, including in China under the brand daodao.com. TripAdvisor Websites also include links to the Websites of its travel advertisers allowing travelers to directly book their travel arrangements. In addition to the TripAdvisor brand, TripAdvisor, Inc. manages and operates Websites under 18 other travel media brands, providing travel pl anning resources across the travel sector. On December 20, 2011, Expedia, Inc. (Expedia) completed the spin-off of TripAdvisor, Inc. (TripAdvisor) to Expedia stockholders. TripAdvisor consists of the domestic and international operations previously associated with Expedia’s TripAdvisor Media Group. In October 2012, it acquired Wanderfly. In March 2013, it acquired Tiny Post (tinypost.co). In April 2013, the Company acquired Jetsetter.com and Gilt Travel Inc. In May 2013, TripAdvisor Inc acquired key technology and talent from CruiseWise Inc. In May 2013, TripAdvisor Inc acquired Guia de Apartamentos Niumba SL. In June 2013, the Company announced that it has acquired GateGuru.
TripAdvisor provides access worldwide to online travel agencies, including Expedia, Orbitz, Travelocity, hotels.com, Priceline and Booking.com. TripAdvisor Media Group offers travel suppliers graphical advertising and cost-per-click marketing platforms. TripAdvisor operates sites in 30 co untries and in 21 languages, including sites in the United S! tates (http://www.tripadvisor.com), the United Kingdom (http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk), France (http://www.tripadvisor.fr), Ireland (http://www.tripadvisor.ie), Germany (http://www.tripadvisor.de), Italy (http://www.tripadvisor.it), Spain (http://www.tripadvisor.es), India (http://www.tripadvisor.in), Japan (http://www.tripadvisor.jp), Portugal and Brazil (http://www.tripadvisor.com.br), Sweden (http://www.tripadvisor.se), The Netherlands (http://www.tripadvisor.nl), Canada (http://www.tripadvisor.ca), Denmark (http://www.tripadvisor.dk), Turkey (http://www.tripadvisor.com.tr), Mexico (http://www.tripadvisor.com.mx), Norway (http://no.tripadvisor.com), Poland (http://pl.tripadvisor.com), Australia (http://www.tripadvisor.com.au), Singapore (http://www.tripadvisor.com.sg), Thailand (http://th.tripadvisor.com), Russia (http://www.tripadvisor.ru), Greece (http://www.tripadvisor.com.gr), Indonesia(http://www.tripadvisor.co.id), Argentina (www.tripadvisor.co.ar), Taiwan (www.tripa dvisor.tw),Malaysia(http://www.tripadvisor.com.my), and Egypt (http://www.tripadvisor.com.eg). TripAdvisor also operates in China under the brand daodao.com (http://www.daodao.com) and Kuxun.cn (http://www.kuxun.cn).
- [By Ben Levisohn]
It’s April Fools’ Day, but the joke is on the bears as stocks gained today, led by Intuitive Surgical (ISRG). TripAdvisor (TRIP), Cisco Systems (CSCO), Boeing (BA) and Walt Disney (DIS).
- [By Victor Reklaitis]
Tech stocks in general were under pressure during the week, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite (COMP) falling 2.8% for its worst percentage drop since October 2012. Other big losers among Internet companies were TripAdvisor Inc. (TRIP) , down 11.3% for the week, and Netflix Inc. (NFLX) , which slid 11.6% for the week.