LOS ANGELES (July 31, 2013) — Mandalay Sports Media (MSM), the sports content and media company founded in 2012 by Peter Guber and Mike Tollin, announced today that it has received a strategic investment from Columbia Capital and Rho Ventures, two leading private-equity firms with significant investments and experience in media and entertainment. As part of the transaction, the investors have acquired a minority equity stake in MSM, and representatives from Columbia and Rho will join MSM’s Board of Directors. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The infusion of new capital will be used to expand MSM’s content operations, and fuel acquisitions and investments across the sports media landscape, including in the areas of content, distribution and technology. Columbia and Rho intend to commit substantial capital and resources beyond this initial investment by identifying opportunities with MSM to invest in, acquire, build and operate businesses and assets in the rapidly expanding marketplace for sports media.
“This is an exciting and strategically important announcement today for MSM,” said Peter Guber, Chairman of MSM and Chairman and CEO of Mandalay Entertainment Group. “Columbia and Rho’s investment and substantial resources will be a key accelerator as we look to build a company of significant scale.”
“Both Columbia and Rho believe in investing in companies with stellar management teams and we can’t think of a better collection of executives to back than the team at MSM, said Jeff Patterson, Partner at Columbia Capital and Mark Leschly, Managing Partner at Rho Ventures. “We share MSM’s vision to build a sports content and media company of substantial size in the dynamic sports marketplace, and we look forward to supporting the vision and using our resources to do just that,” they added.
Columbia, founded in 1989, has invested in more than 150 companies, with aggregate capital under management of $2.5 billion. Rho has approximately $2 billion under management and has invested in more than 200 companies since its founding in 1981.
“Columbia and Rho have track records that speak for themselves in identifying and then building major businesses within the media sector,” said Mike Tollin, Co-Chairman of MSM. “We are thrilled to add Jeff and Mark to MSM’s Board of Directors, and to leverage their business acumen and experience as we execute on our ambitious business plan, ” added Rich Battista, CEO of MSM.
Launched in 2012, MSM is a diversified sports content and media company that creates high-quality, sports-themed programming for all platforms and creates, acquires and invests in businesses and assets across the sports content and media landscape. Since its founding a little more than a year ago, MSM has produced content for ESPN, Turner Sports, Legendary Entertainment, and AOL, with numerous projects in development with major television, digital, feature film and sports entities.
CAA Sports, the world’s leading athlete representation agency, participated in the formation of MSM. CAA Sports uses its expertise and resources to help create valuable talent and content relationships for MSM and provides advisory services in the areas of business development, marketing, and brand integration and sponsorship, among others.