Family Entertainment Holdings Receives Growth Investment from Seaport Capital and Gray Television
November 9, 2021
A group of investors led by Seaport Capital, a New York-based private equity firm, and including Gray Television (NYSE: GTN), announced today that it has formed and provided growth capital to Family Entertainment Holdings, LLC (“FEH” or the “Company”), in partnership with an experienced team of live event entertainment executives including Ken Hudgens, Eric Cole, Tim Murray and Grant Reeves. FEH is a diversified, family-oriented entertainment holding company that seeks to develop successful live event formats and other entertainment intellectual property. Ken Hudgens will lead the Company as Chief Executive Officer.
The investment enables FEH to continue to grow its first two show formats, Magic of Lights and Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live, as well as bring them under a single holding company structure. Magic of Lights, established in 2016, is an outdoor holiday light experience displayed at venues throughout North America. Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live, established in 2019 in conjunction with Raycom Sports, a division of Gray Television, is a Hot Wheels-themed monster truck show presented in both North America and internationally.
“Both Magic of Lights and Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live have tremendous growth opportunities and we are excited to partner with this investor group led by Seaport Capital to realize on that potential,” said Ken Hudgens, Founder and CEO of FEH. “We knew Seaport was the right partner for us, given its alignment with our vision for the business and extensive experience growing founder-led businesses in the live event and media sectors.”
“Ken and team bring highly successful leadership experience in live events to FEH, and we look forward to supporting their vision of creating a diversified, family-oriented entertainment platform anchored by Magic of Lights and Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live,” said Drew Meyers, Partner at Seaport Capital.
Pat LaPlatney, CEO of Gray Television said, “We believe in these businesses. Local engagement is the foundation of Gray Television and nothing engages better than affordable family entertainment. Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live and Magic of Lights already collaborate with our local station teams in 30 markets.”
Bill Luby, Partner at Seaport Capital added, “Investing alongside founders like Ken, Eric, Tim and Grant to help them develop a business of meaningful scale with compelling unit economics and growth opportunities, both organically and through acquisition, is consistent with what Seaport has done since our inception with founder-led and family-led businesses.”
Family Entertainment Holdings, LLC is the third investment made by Seaport Capital Partners Fund VI, Seaport’s 2020 vintage buyout fund.
About Family Entertainment Holdings, LLC
Family Entertainment Holdings, LLC is a diversified, family-oriented entertainment holding company that seeks to develop successful live event formats and other entertainment intellectual property. The Company’s live event formats include Magic of Lights, an outdoor holiday light experience displayed at venues throughout North America and Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live, a Hot Wheels-themed monster truck show presented both in North America and internationally. The Company is headquartered in Medina, Ohio. For additional information, visit https://magicoflights.com or https://hotwheelsmonstertruckslive.com.
About Seaport Capital
Founded in 1997, Seaport Capital is a lower middle-market buyout firm that invests in communication infrastructure and services, business and information services, and media companies (the “Focus Sectors”). Seaport typically invests $10 to $30 million of equity capital in companies generating EBITDA between $3 and $15 million, with the goal of maximizing the return on invested capital. Seaport is currently investing through Seaport Capital Partners VI, a 2020 vintage fund. Seaport’s substantial industry expertise and investing experience enable it to develop successful strategies in partnership with management teams; its relationships and professionals help achieve them. Nearly all of Seaport’s platform investments have been owned by founders or entrepreneurs seeking a collaborative institutional partner to provide the financial and operational resources to grow their businesses and execute on a successful strategic plan. For additional information, visit https://www.seaportcapital.com.
About Gray Television
Gray Television, headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, is the largest owner of top-rated local television stations and digital assets in the United States. Upon its anticipated acquisition of the television stations of Meredith Corporation, Gray will become the nation’s second largest television broadcaster, with television stations serving 113 markets that reach approximately 36 percent of US television households. The pro forma portfolio includes 79 markets with the top-rated television station and 101 markets with the first and/or second highest rated television station, according to Comscore’s audience measurement data. Gray also owns video program production, marketing, and digital businesses including Raycom Sports, Tupelo Honey, and RTM Studios, the producer of PowerNation programs and content, and is the majority owner of Swirl Films.