Just Watch RMG G(r)o(w)

Gail Chiasson, North American Editor

In a combination of events, Reach Media Group is talking to banks and private equity partners to build more funds for acquisitions; has combined all its networks into three; and has made management changes.

In terms of the latter, Luke Zaientz, executive vice-president business development and one of the early execs in the firm, is leaving to pursue new unspecified challenges while Brit David Bruce is taking over these responsibilities as part of his position as executive vice-president, partnerships and content.

And in another move, Suzanne Alecia La Forgia, former EVP, national advertising sales and recently heading eastern region sales, is moving out, with Gerry Jones, recently head of western sales, taking on the full national advertising position. Chuck Strottman now heads all marketing – Unconfirmed reports have La Forgia joining Screenvision, Ed

“With our recent acquisitions, we had people duplicating jobs which simply didn’t make sense,” says Garry McGuire, CEO of RMG. Jones had been EVP of sales and marketing at Executive Media Network, now part of RMG, while Bruce had held held multiple, senior account management roles at Interpublic Group in Europe, including at McCann London and Ansible Mobile, and was earlier with Gyro, a leading integrated marketing agency in Europe and America. He was recently V-P marketing at RMG.

We reached McGuire while he was talking to various banks and private equity partners in New York as part of an effort to raise funds for acquisitions – DailyDOOH had forecast last October that RMG would post an IPO in 18-24 months. Ed.

While an IPO isn’t out of the question, McGuire says, “I’m not convinced that that’s the way to go right now. We haven’t registered any papers for an IPO.”

McGuire says that while the company’s revenue has doubled in the past year, RMG has poured all profits back into the company to help it grow. He’s looking at three acquisitions (one is close and another perhaps three weeks away) and he’d need USD 250 million if he could succeed in acquiring all three.

Asked if his current investors were willing to add to their stake in the expanding company at this time, McGuire said, “Not Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, as it is more interested in younger start-ups, nor National CineMedia, but recent investor Tennenbaum Capital Partners LLC likely would.”

McGuire went on to say that he really is aiming for more consolidation in the industry. “There are way too many players – something like 200 – and we really feel that consolidation is the way to go.”

RMG recently consolidated all its own networks into three, and the potential new acquisitions, “would fit nicely into these.”

The three are:

  1. Executive Traveler – which includes all the airplane, airports and lounges;
  2. Fitness and wellness – which includes gyms, health centres and pharmacies;
  3. RMG Local – which includes taxis, hotels, casinos, and N.Y. Times (coffee bars and casual dining).

“Our advertisers told us that they were looking for simplicity and these three groups offer similar target audiences,” says McGuire.

In terms of acquisitions, he says that there are lots of properties available and that, for example, EMN had been purchased completely on debt.

“There’s lots of similar situations out there,” he told us as he rushed off to his next appointment with a banker. “And there’s a lot of interest among the people to whom we’re talking.”

2 Responses to “Just Watch RMG G(r)o(w)”

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