Jump to content

ICON - Iconix Brands Inc


Gopinath
 Share

Recommended Posts

I think you really are missing some of the bear points on this name. Namely that this company has pretty fraudulent accounting that is now being scrutinized in the sense that they would buyin JV's and move things to the revenue line to mask what is a business that is declining HSD digits organically. You could also look at how crappy some of their brands are and see what happened with Cherokee recently. Regarding the balance sheet, it's very levered and they will need to pay much higher interest rates once those 1.5% and 2.5% convertible notes come due. Neil Cole should probably be imprisoned based on his involvement in this scam.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I looked at this a while back.  I think the FCF generation is much lower than people are estimating.  If you pull up their brands in Google trends, they are all strongly declining brands.  To get their growth, they are on a treadmill of acquiring new brands.  To figure out the real owner earnings, you must subtract out this acquisition expense -- because it is not going away.  Additionally, they already have a ton of debt.  I am concerned that they will soon get to a point where nobody will lend them more money, and the apparent growth rapidly ends.  The large debt also gives them sensitivity to interest rates -- at least when they try to roll the loans over.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...
  • 2 months later...

I'm surprised there's not more love around CoBF for Iconix:

 

- priced as if it's going out of business

- there are adults in charge now that the CEO, COO and CFO have been replaced

- turnaround expert Peter Cuneo (or Marvel fame, among others) just transitioned from interim CEO to Chairman

- the delay in filing their financials and their restatement of past financials creates noise, even though they already announced that they expect the restatement to be a non-cash impairment of past results, with no impact on 2016

- under previous management, ICON apparently did muck around their financials, which adds to the noise

- Blackrock now has a material position (material for ICON, not for BLK)

- they recently sold two of their non-core brands (last one announced earlier today)

- the next stops should be: 1) filing of restated financials, and 2) announcement regarding the refinancing of their debt due in June

- the 2018 debt trades cheaply, so there may be an opportunity there as well

- the high proportion of shares short could make this interesting fast...

 

In summary, I believe the risk of default to be much lower than what is currently reflected in the market price, and that a catalyst exists in the refinancement of their debt. As such ICON is a fairly large position for me, so contrarian opinions are very much welcome  : )

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've looked at  it a few times over the past couple of years, but I never got comfortable "building on mud" which is what I treat questionable financials as, especially when the executives "flee for their lives".  Hope it works out for you.  Personally a Blackrock investment is very meh to me unless it is supported by or linked to a specific manager.  They kind of have to own everything, don't they?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the perspective (and wishes!). Very much agree with the Blackrock sentiment in general; in this case, it's the timing I like more than the player itself (would not make sense to have increased their position if the financial situation was as dire as it appears at first glance). Also, from their earlier announcements, I think they have pretty much limited the depth of the mud to use your analogy (no question in my mind that the previous management team played around to inflate the cash flow numbers, so I'm actually glad someone decided to clean house). Thanks for stopping by.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think every value investor has looked at this.  If you like it, you like it for the cash flows.  If you don't like it, you think the cash flows are melting ice cubes and that one day the debt won't be supported.  Sort of like VRX, but I would have serious concerns about how long-lasting Joe Boxer is (and a lot of the other brands). Additionally, given the lack of strong brands, the negotiations with large partners, i.e. Wal-Mart are much more difficult.  You don't shop at wally world because you need joe boxer, you shop for the cheap stuff. In other words, ICON has no leverage in those deals. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think every value investor has looked at this.  If you like it, you like it for the cash flows.  If you don't like it, you think the cash flows are melting ice cubes and that one day the debt won't be supported.  Sort of like VRX, but I would have serious concerns about how long-lasting Joe Boxer is (and a lot of the other brands). Additionally, given the lack of strong brands, the negotiations with large partners, i.e. Wal-Mart are much more difficult.  You don't shop at wally world because you need joe boxer, you shop for the cheap stuff. In other words, ICON has no leverage in those deals.

Funny, I actually mentioned Iconix in the Valeant thread. Very similar situation IMHO.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 10 months later...

Iconix is exploring selling Peanuts brand in a bidding process which generates ~90mm in revenues. Proceeds would probably go to pay down debt, I suppose they can get between 350-500mm but on the other hand they would take a 45mm hit in EBITDA. Not too happy that they’re selling one of their premium brands but on the other hand the leverage profile should improve to ~5x (assuming EBITDA comes down to 140 and total debt to 700mm) which should help it support a higher multiple.

 

Thoughts?

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...