Ballantyne Strong, the Omaha provider of cinema projection equipment and services, closed out its fiscal year without making any acquisitions despite devoting a significant portion of management’s time to the hunt, officials said Monday.
Meanwhile, several investors on a conference call with management pressed the company to put its cash to a different use.
Citing a cash and cash equivalents balance of $40.2 million, the company’s lack of long-term debt and what they said was an undervalued stock price, investors asked company officials to consider either buying back stock or initiating a dividend.
Ballantyne CEO Gary Cavey didn’t comment on the possibility but said it’s something the board reviews regularly.
Earlier in the call, he told investors Ballantyne Strong needs to remain focused on mergers and acquisitions activity.
Cavey said the firm is focusing on being the “one-stop leader of turnkey solutions to cinema owners,” but given how many theaters have already converted to digital, must also focus on acquisitions and internal innovations.
How much time did Cavey and his management waste on prospecting for new acquisitions when they could have devoted that time to generating new business? It's been another three months since this call and still prospecting. If you couldn't find good companies while the price of your competitors was the cheapest it's been in years, I fully expect for management to pay top dollar for a company that they could have paid 50% less for a year earlier. I can only imagine the discussion in the board room about acquisitions....either "lets all fly out to California for the week and prospect" OR "did we find any targets..no....ok let's talk about it at the next board meeting."
Totally preparing myself for a stupid acquisition if they can ever pull the trigger.
tiger, "Wasted time" sums things up pretty well. IMO, but the company needs to announce "something" at its next conference call....... an LBO, dividend, acquistion, breakup of the company, share repurchase, etc........ I feel my investment has become an interest-free loan to the company without value....... i.e., JMO, until something changes there's no reason to own BTN. GLTA