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Monday, August 31, 2009

Disney Marvel’s $1.4 Billion Man


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He’s not nearly as famous as the Incredible Hulk or his company’s other comic-book icons, but Ike Perlmutter appears to be getting a superhero’s share of the proceeds from Monday’s $4 billion sale of Marvel Entertainment

Mr. Perlmutter, who outmaneuvered the billionaire financiers Ronald O. Perelman and Carl C. Icahn to acquire Marvel out of bankruptcy more than a decade ago, will be receiving about $1.44 billion in cash and Disney stock as part of the deal, regulatory filings suggest.

As of May, Mr. Perlmutter, or funds he controls, held nearly 28.9 million shares of Marvel stock, or almost 37 percent of its outstanding shares.

With Disney valuing its cash-and-stock offer at $50 per Marvel share, that would value Mr. Perlmutter’s holdings at more than $1.4 billion. About 60 percent of the sale price is expected to be in cash, Disney said Monday.

Mr. Permlutter built his fortune buying a motley collection of surplus goods outlets, including Odd Lot Trading, and has also owned Remington Products, the electric razor company, and a stake in Coleco.

In early 1990, he bought the predecessor of a company called Toy Biz, known for marketing action figures, and brought in Avi Arad, a toy designer and superhero comics fan, to work with him.

Though a series of financial twists and turns, Toy Biz ended up acquiring Marvel out of bankruptcy in 1998. He became the company’s chief executive in early 2005.

Despite the considerable cash he’ll be receiving, Mr. Perlmutter apparently plans to keep his day job. Disney said Monday that after the deal, he will be staying on to oversee Marvel’s properties.

Source The New York Times

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