• Media & Telecom

Firms Form Joint Venture That Will Operate CD-DVD-Game Distributor as a Standalone Business

LOS ANGELES, CA (September 1, 2010) – Platinum Equity and The Gores Group today announced that they have acquired Alliance Entertainment from Source Interlink Companies, Inc.  Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Alliance Entertainment is the largest wholesale distributor of CD, DVD and videogame titles in the United States, providing distribution, fulfillment and other services to such retailers as Barnes & Noble, Borders, Amazon.com, Target.com and BestBuy.com.

“The market for distributing media content is highly fragmented and rapidly evolving,” said Johnny Lopez, the partner at Platinum leading the Alliance Entertainment investment.  “However, we have a great deal of experience assisting companies to thrive within industries in flux. With our combined operational and financial support, M&A expertise, and the company’s established management team, Alliance Entertainment will have all the elements it needs to grow.”

Alliance Entertainment manages a physical inventory of 400,000 CD, DVD and videogame titles in its state-of-the-art distribution center in Shepherdsville, KY. The company has 2,900 unique customers and ships to 14,500 locations throughout the United States. Alliance Entertainment also specializes in the development of highly-customized technology and fulfillment services supporting e-commerce.

“This is a fundamentally solid business, but it faces substantial challenges in a rapidly changing distribution market,” said Steve Yager, Senior Managing Director of The Gores Group. “We look forward to helping navigate those changes and maximize potential opportunities for growth.”

The company was acquired and will be operated by Project Panther Holding Corporation, a joint venture between Platinum Equity and The Gores Group.

“This is an exciting opportunity for our company, our customers and our suppliers,” said Alan Tuchman, Alliance Entertainment CEO, who has been with the company for 25 years and will continue leading the business.  “This transaction will provide us with additional operational and financial resources to continue our long-standing, proven commitment to customer service.  We are now well positioned to grow the business going forward.”
A team of operations specialists is now working with the Alliance Entertainment management team to transition the business to new ownership.

“This transaction will allow Source Interlink to focus on the continued growth and investment in our core competencies of wholesale magazine distribution and the further integration of our enthusiast media properties across multiple platforms,” said Michael L. Sullivan, CEO of Source Interlink. “Throughout this process it was clear that Platinum Equity and The Gores Group value Alliance Entertainment’s capable management team, talented employees and dedicated customers.  We are pleased to have identified the right buyer and are confident the business is in good hands.”

About Platinum Equity
Platinum Equity (www.platinumequity.com) is a global M&A&O® firm specializing in the merger, acquisition and operation of companies that provide services and solutions to customers in a broad range of business markets, including information technology, telecommunications, logistics, metals services, manufacturing and distribution. Since its founding in 1995 by Tom Gores, Platinum Equity has completed over 100 acquisitions with more than $27.5 billion in aggregate annual revenue at the time of acquisition.

About The Gores Group, LLC
The Gores Group LLC is a private equity firm focused on acquiring controlling interests in mature and growing businesses which can benefit from the firm’s operating experience and flexible capital base. The firm combines the operational expertise and detailed due diligence capabilities of a strategic buyer with the seasoned M&A team of a traditional financial buyer. The Gores Group, LLC, which was founded in 1987 by Alec E. Gores, has become a leading investor having demonstrated over time a reliable track record of creating substantial value in its portfolio companies alongside management. The firm’s current private equity fund has committed equity capital of $2.9 billion. Headquartered in Los Angeles, The Gores Group, LLC maintains offices in Boulder, CO, and London. For more information, please visit www.gores.com

About Source Interlink Companies Inc.
Source Interlink Companies (www.sourceinterlink.com) is the leading publisher of magazines and on-line content for enthusiast audiences, as well as the second largest wholesale distributor of magazines and provider of related in-store services across North America.  Its media division creates content for more than 70 publications,  90 websites,  events, television, and radio.  A portfolio which includes a number respected brands such as Motor Trend, Automobile, Hot Rod, Automotive.com, Surfer and Intellichoice. 


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