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EFA Partners Serves as Exclusive Sell-Side Advisor to Muller Family Theatres in Sale of Company to Northwoods Entertainment

August 23, 2016

New York, NY (August 2016) - EFA Partners, a boutique financial advisory firm focused on arranging capital and providing investment banking and strategic consulting services for entertainment, media and technology companies, announced today that it served as the exclusive sell-side financial advisor to Muller Family Theatres ("Muller" or the "Company") in the completed sale of the Company's business operations and real estate assets to Northwoods Entertainment, LLC ("Northwoods"). EFA also arranged a financing of the Muller real estate as part of Northwoods' financing for its acquisition. 

A leading regional theatrical exhibitor, Muller operated eight locations with a total of 104 screens throughout the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. The transaction closed on July 29, and all eight Muller theatres were immediately transitioned to Northwoods. EFA has maintained a long-term working relationship with Muller's management team, having previously served as the Company's strategic and financial advisor when it arranged financing to support Muller's conversion to digital projection.

"EFA knows our industry exceptionally well," stated Mike Muller, President of Muller. "Brandt Gully and the EFA team exceeded all expectations as they led us through the sale process. Their expertise helped secure a buyer who is an ideal fit for us, and their arrangement of financing for Northwoods enabled us to obtain the price that represented the full value of our theatres."

EFA principals utilized their 40 years of experience in providing financial solutions for film exhibition companies to execute a tailored, results-oriented approach for Muller that took the sale process from start to finish. This included garnering interest from a selection of qualified potential buyers, negotiating proposal terms, arranging financing for the buyer, and assisting with all aspects of the transaction closing, including the negotiation of sale and financing documentation.

"We're very excited about this successful sale. It has been a priority since day one of our process for the Muller family to transition the business they've built to a company that will continue to passionately serve and entertain their loyal customers. We have no doubt that Jon Goldstein and the Northwoods team will do just that," stated Brandt Gully, Managing Partner and founding principal of EFA Partners. "It has been a pleasure to work with Mike and Bob Muller over the years and to complete this sale which caps their stellar careers in the industry."

About EFA Partners

EFA Partners is a boutique financial advisory firm that provides investment banking services focused on capital raises, mergers and acquisitions, and financial consulting services for entertainment, media and technology companies. Its senior team has closed and managed over $14.5 billion of financings in its targeted sectors, including numerous mergers and acquisitions transactions. EFA also has a wealth of relationships from which to source capital including local and regional banks, national and international banks, specialty finance groups, equipment financiers, providers of mezzanine debt and private equity groups. Since its formation in 2009, EFA has been retained by over 120 clients while arranging and placing over $1.1 billion of capital and advising on nearly $2 billion of additional transactions.

About Muller Family Theatres

Muller Family Theatres, previously owned by Mike and Bob Muller, was a leading film exhibitor of eight sites with 104 screens in the Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota area. The Muller family operated in Minnesota for over 90 years, establishing its first theatre in 1918.

About Northwoods Entertainment, LLC

Northwoods Entertainment, LLC is owned by Jon Goldstein of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. Mr. Goldstein also owns and/or operates nine theatres in Michigan, Pennsylvania, New York and Indiana. Several of these theatres contain an enhanced food and beverage element and recliner seats. In addition, he developed and owns a 5,000 square foot restaurant which sits adjacent to his theater in Meadville, Pennsylvania.

Leading provider of digital media services for film and television

Background: Seasoned management team formed new film and television digital media services company and approached EFA to arrange financing for potential acquisition targets.

EFA Process: The company retained EFA to arrange acquisition financing and EFA approached several banks and specialty lenders.

Result: Closed debt financing to support two company acquisitions and working capital facility.

start quoteWe selected EFA as our advisor due to their financial experience specific to the film and television services sector. The past year has been tremendous for us as we significantly grew our business with EFA arranging financing that allowed us to execute on our growth plans very quicklyend quote

John Suh
Co-Founder and Co-President of  Pixelogic

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Television broadcast company owning and operating WGGB-TV and WGGB-TV D2, the ABC and FOX network affiliates serving the Springfield-Holyoke, MA market

Background: Initially approached by Gormally Broadcasting to arrange financing to recapitalize the company and fund planned acquisition growth. EFA became company’s sell-side advisor when industry changes and market forces made exploring a sale a more advantageous and financially rewarding strategic option for the company.

EFA Process: EFA was successful in securing financing commitments to fund a recapitalization and several acquisitions during the initial engagement focus. However, marketplace dynamics noted above resulted in EFA recommending a company sale. EFA provided a tailored, results-oriented approach from start to finish.

Result: EFA identified Meredith Corporation (NYSE: MDP) as the leading buyer and managed all aspects of the sale, maximizing the sales price received for the company.

start quoteIt was a pleasure working with Dave Harrington and the team at EFA. Through Dave’s deep industry knowledge, relationships and marketplace expertise, we were able to maximize the ultimate value of our company’s broadcast assets. end quote

John Gormally,
Founder, Owner and President of Gormally Broadcasting

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Growing movie theatre company that provides an in-theatre dining experience with over 300 screens throughout the US

Background: Longtime client that initially approached EFA seeking junior capital to grow its business.

EFA Process: After reviewing the company's capital structure and growth plans EFA recommended a financing structure that would recapitalize the company and provide significant growth capital.

Result: Closed three financings that recapitalized the company and provided growth for new theatres. Studio Movie Grill also retained EFA for M&A opportunities and to assist with restructuring process.

start quoteWe were delighted to work with the EFA Partners team on our second successful financing with them. Their wide range of capital markets experience, banking relationships and deep knowledge of the cinema and location-based entertainment industries made them the perfect choice to assist with our financing efforts, which support SMG's active growth strategy. end quote

Brian Schultz,
Owner, founder and President of Studio Movie Grill

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Television and motion picture post-production and digital content management services

Background: Company approached EFA seeking refinancing of its debt subsequent to other advisors attempting to do so with a combination of senior debt and equity.

EFA Process: After reviewing its capital structure EFA recommended a debt structure to fully refinance the company's debt.

Result: Closed senior debt facility that refinanced the company's existing debt, which was much more cost-effective than equity.

start quoteThe EFA team proposed a creative strategy to recapitalize Modern VideoFilm that met our needs in a way that was unique and different from what other financial advisory firms proposed to us. We appreciated their understanding of the entertainment industry and EFA's extensive financial relationships and we look forward to continuing our relationship. end quote

Moshe Barkat,
CEO and President of Modern VideoFilm

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Mark Cuban and Todd Wagner's well established movie theatre company - with almost 300 screens located throughout the US

Background: Landmark approached EFA for an equipment financing to convert its screens from 35mm to digital projection.

EFA Process: While the company had many financing options given its strong ownership, its management was busy with business operations and retained EFA to handle the digital conversion financing process.

Result: Closed equipment financing facility utilized for all of its digital projectors. EFA led all aspects of the financing including negotiation of complex digital cinema conversion agreements.

start quoteEFA's unique knowledge and experience with film exhibition and digital cinema was extremely helpful in leading our financing process. Landmark prides itself in providing the best customer experience to its patrons and we are excited that this financing will allow us to continue that with our digital conversion. end quote

Sky Hansen,
Chief Financial Officer of Landmark Theatres

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Provider of digital information services to the film industry

Background: Company approached EFA seeking funding to refinance debt and provide growth capital.

EFA Process: After reviewing its capital structure and growth plans, EFA approached the specialty lender market and arranged debt facility. Subsequently, company retained EFA as sell-side advisor. 

Result: Arranged debt for refinaning existing debt and for growth. Also, handled sale process from start to close for successful sale of business.

start quoteIt was a pleasure to work with the team at EFA Partners who served as our advisor on the sale of West World Media. Through deep industry knowledge, relationships and marketplace expertise, we were able to achieve a successful outcome. end quote

Brett West
Founder and President of West World Media

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Television industry management group formed to manage and operate US TV stations

Background: Huntington approached EFA seeking capital for potential television station acquisitions.

EFA Process: EFA understood that private equity firms and lenders are seeking experienced management teams to back for acquisition opportunities in the television sector.

Result: EFA has introduced the company to several private equity firms as well as senior lenders, resulting in bids for groups of television stations and the company continues to seek other opportunities, with EFA’s assistance.

start quoteWe are acutely aware of the trends that are transforming the local broadcast TV business and have recently begun to explore opportunities to acquire stations. We are very excited about the prospects for the industry and the opportunities to capitalize upon. We are also pleased to have EFA Partners as our financial advisor as their many years of media industry experience and extensive financial relationships will help us accomplish our goal of building a best-in-class station group.

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David Tynan,
CEO of Huntington Broadcast Management Group

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