Adcentricity In Bankruptcy Protection Process; Creditors Owed $3.8M

January 31, 2014 by Dave Haynes

adcenTUAdcentricity, the Canadian media company started to roll up and sell the aggregated media inventory of scores of small to large digital out of home media networks, has officially entered the bankruptcy protection process.

The collective companies that fall under the Adcentricity umbrella owe $3,828,909.35 to creditors, according to papers filed in Ontario courts through a company that specializes in insolvencies and restructuring.

The dog ate my MBA, so I can’t really, fully interpret the filings and financials, but they do show big chunks of money are owed to various out of home media companies, like Care Media and Instore Audio Network. Those would be revenue shares for media campaigns booked and executed by Adcentricity. Some of the biggest creditors appear to be investors.

The filings say that company does not have any full-time employees now (but a contract CEO and contract CFO), and that the secured investors don’t want to put any more money in to fund continuing losses. The company had lost roughly $6.1 million in the last three fiscal years.

The assets of the company will now be put for sale. I know a very good targeted database for OOH networks had been built, so there may be IP there. The company that bought Adcentricity in April 2014 moved them into things like proximity marketing via Bluetooth, so maybe there is IP there, as well. A business friend has a hunch about who might make a play for the assets.

Clearly, the company was struggling for revenue prior to the 2012 sale and the departure of founders Rob Gorrie and Jeff Atley. They ran smack into a recession,  the reality that the marketplace wasn’t ready to buy Digital OOH in a big way, and networks that varied from slick and professional, to error-ridden clown shows.

I sat in a Toronto restaurant with Gorrie back in 2006 or something, when he walked me through his business plan and rationale. Made a lot of sense, but the the timing didn’t work no matter how smart and energetic Gorrie was and is.

Shame it’s ended like this, and sorry for the creditors who aren’t very likely to see that $3.8M or anything close recovered and distributed. See Saw Networks, Adcentricity’s main competitor, also disappeared in the last couple of years, and another aggregation play, rVue, is still out there but hardly a major force.

Ironically, the whole rolled-up Digital OOH network thing seems to now be getting some traction via companies like Vistar Media.

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