Dave & Buster’s makes play with Main Event acquisition
Dave & Buster’s move to acquire Main Event, a family entertainment company, signals a new target customer for the dinner and games venue.
Why it matters: The combination, announced this morning, would bolster Dave & Buster’s footprint of 145 venues in North America and its ability to stretch from its young adult focus to catering to more families with kids.
Context: Dallas-based Main Event operates 50 locations across the U.S. with family fun options that include bowling, laser tag, arcades and virtual reality games.
- The deal highlights quite a comeback for the younger consumer dining and entertainment space, which was hammered by the pandemic.
- The pandemic forced Dave & Buster's competitor Chuck E. Cheese into layoffs and bankruptcy.
Details: The all-cash transaction has an enterprise value of $835 million.
- Both companies will continue to operate independently.
- The deal is expected to close later this year, subject to regulatory review and approval by shareholders of Ardent Leisure — which owns a stake in Main Event and is traded on the Australian Stock Exchange.
- Private equity firm RedBird also owns a stake in Main Event.
Of note: Upon the close, Main Event CEO Chris Morris will become CEO of Dave & Buster’s.
- Kevin Sheehan, Dave & Buster's interim CEO since October, will return to his role as the company's chairman.