littleplasticmen Vol 1, No 2 - page 10

Weinshanker takes aim at struggling superstore
Group to kickstart toy museum
Set for summer debut
JOELWeinshanker, president and sole
shareholder of NECA (National Enter-
tainment Collectibles Association) has
made a $21.4 million cash bid to ac-
quire struggling multimedia entertain-
ment retailer Hastings Entertainment.
The deal would merge the retailer with
one of its biggest vendors and share-
holders. NECA owns around 12% of
Hastings’ outstanding stock.
Under terms of the deal, Wein-
shanker affiliates DrawAnother Circle
LLC and Hendrix Acquisition Corpo-
ration would pay $3 per share for the
outstanding shares of Hastings they
do not already own. When the deal
was announced on 17 March, the bid
represented a 57% premium over the
closing price of Hastings stock on 14
March, but falls short of the stock’s
52-week high of $5.45 per share.
“NECA is a significant supplier of
movie, book and video game merchan-
dise and collectibles to the Hastings
superstores, and we’ve had a close and
growing business relationship with Mr.
Weinshanker over the last decade,” aid
John Marmaduke, Hastings chair-
man and CEO. “Mr. Weinshanker,
through his affiliation with the estates
A GROUP in Austin, Texas, comprised
of collectors and genre fans have
banned together in a push to get a toy
museum going in the Lone Star State’s
capitol city. Principles in the forthcom-
ing Austin Toy Museum plan to launch
a Kickstarter campaign in late April to
help fund the effort, which will be com-
prised of over 20,000 pieces focused
on the golden age of figure-dom that
was the 1980s. Older toys will also be
represented however, with some dating
back to the early 1900s.
The museum will also feature more
rare and unique items from the his-
tory of toys, including manufacturer
prototypes, exclusive releases and one-
offs acquired directly from former toy
industry employees.
Beyond toys, the museum will also
house a collection of classic coin-oper-
ated video games from the late 70s and
early 80s. Over 50 games are currently
envisioned, including some of the earli-
est home consoles. Upright machines to
be part of the exhibit include Dragon’s
Lair, Space Invaders, Ms. Pacman,
Missile Command, Centipede, Aster-
oids, Q-Bert, Donkey Kong, and Pole
Position. All these games are original
hardware and the plan is to have these
set to ‘free play’ for all visitors.
For more information on the planned
museum, and the eventual crowd-fund-
ing campaign, head on over to
of Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley and
Muhammad Ali, and his company’s
management of Graceland, is one of
the leading drivers of the lifestyle in-
dustry, and we believe Hastings busi-
ness will continue to benefit from our
relationship with him and NECA.”
The merger is subject to approval
of two-thirds of Hastings’ sharehold-
ers. Shareholders controlling 44%
of the company’s outstanding stock
have said they will support the deal.
Hastings reported a net gain of
$2.3 million for its fiscal fourth
quarter, which ended 31 January
2014. That compared favorably to
income of $1.2 million for the simi-
lar fiscal period in 2013. Hastings at-
tributed the bump in earnings to the
introduction of new product catego-
ries including consumer electronics,
music electronics and accessories,
vinyl, hobby, lifestyle and tablets.
However, for the fiscal year ending
at the end of January, the retailer
posted a loss of $10.2 million, com-
pared to a loss of $9.3 million for the
previous fiscal year.
Based in Amarillo, Texas, Hastings
operates 126 stores across 19 states.
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