Access 360 acquires Arena Media Networks

By David Weinfeld 

Fresh off of a Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection filing, Arena Media Networks, a digital place-based media company with video networks in sports stadiums, has been acquired by Access 360 Media. After raising nearly $12.5 million in two rounds of venture capital funding, Arena Media was unable to bear the weight of the economic downturn.

As reported in Advertising Age, Access 360 has agreed to pay off Arena Media Network’s bankruptcy loan of $800,000, as well as an additional $3.6 million to $5.2 million in debt, $100,000 to Arena’s creditors and $50,000 to close out its bankruptcy estate.

Arena Media staffers, who will all be kept on following the acquisition, should be breathing a sigh of relief. Access 360 is an ideal organization to be taking over the company’s assets. Access 360 is a premier multi-platform media company whose reach extends to the retail, mobile, and online channels. Arena Media’s digital networks in ballparks, stadiums, and entertainment centers across the U.S. are a welcome complement to Access 360’s retail-based media properties.

Through an exclusive, multi-year partnership with Simon Property Group, Access 360 provides the editorial content and advertising programming for more than 900 digital screens in shopping malls across the country. Adding some of the world’s largest sporting venues to a digital place-based media company that already reaches over 40 million consumers per month, is sure to elevate Access 360’s appeal to major brands and advertisers.

“If you go to these malls, just throw a stone, and you’ll hit any consumer who will buy the brands being advertised,” said Lon Otremba, CEO at Access 360. “Just as in arenas, you’re often within 100 feet or less of places for people to purchase products.”

With screens in over 50 professional sports and entertainment venues, covering all of the top 10 DMAs, I’m sure Access 360 was more than happy to take Arena’s business over. Even though Arena Media was under water, the company’s digital signage network has long-term value. With the capital, operational infrastructure, and time to revitalize Arena Media, Access 360 may come to be championed for pulling a diamond from the rough.