DreamWorks Animation investor Paul Allen is dissolving the partnership that controls the movie studio and will sell some of his stake in...
DreamWorks Animation investor Paul Allen is dissolving the partnership that controls the movie studio and will sell some of his stake in the company.
Allen demanded that the process be started soon after the Nov. 3 release of “Flushed Away,” his investment fund, DW Investment II, said in a statement Wednesday.
The decision ends a collaboration started in 1995, when Allen invested in DreamWorks, the film studio founded by Jeffrey Katzenberg, now head of the animation unit, director Steven Spielberg and music producer David Geffen. Allen and others may sell about $300 million in shares, initially weighing on the stock price, said Banc of America Securities analyst Michael Savner.
DreamWorks may later buy back $300 million in shares, he said.
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“This will cause a significant amount of shares to come on the market in a very short time frame,” said Pali Research analyst Richard Greenfield, who has a “sell” rating on the stock and doesn’t own any.
Shares of Glendale, Calif.-based DreamWorks, fell 45 cents, or 1.9 percent, to $23.73 Wednesday. The stock has declined 15 percent from its 2004 initial public offering.
A buyback would add to earnings per share, Savner, who has a “buy” rating on the stock and doesn’t own any, said in a research note. The company said in August that it had $527 million in cash as of June 30.
“We believe the resolution of Holdco will be a positive for the company and its shareholders,” said DreamWorks President Lewis Coleman in a statement.
The Holdco partnership was created with the DreamWorks Animation IPO. Andrew Brimmer, a spokesman for Allen’s investment group, declined to comment beyond the release.
Allen has about a $570 million investment in DreamWorks Animation. His original investment was $700 million; he received $120 million when the animation unit went public in 2004. The group sold the live-action film studio to Viacom’s Paramount Pictures for $774 million on Feb. 1.