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Competitor Group, Inc.

Sports Events Marketing

"Competitor Group, Inc. (CGI) is the leading active lifestyle resource dedicated to promoting the sports of running, cycling and triathlon. CGI owns and operates 55 events around the world, including the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon Series, TriRock Triathlon Series and Columbia Muddy Buddy Series; which will deliver more than 400,000 professional and amateur participants in 2011. CGI publishes four magazine titles including VeloNews, Inside Triathlon, Triathlete and Competitor magazine with a combined monthly circulation of more than 620,000. In addition, the company hosts a captive lifestyle community online at, delivering over 1.5 million monthly unique visitors and 25 million page views" From the LinkedIn Profile.

The Company was restructured in the first half of 2016 abd became partly owned-along with the existing PE Group Calera Capital-by its two principal lenders, both of whom happen to be BDCs: Ares Capital and Golub Capital.

BDC Credit Reporter View

Competitor Group, Inc. or CGI is a sports event marketing company (think "Rock & Roll Marathon") and publishing company, founded relatively recently in 2007 and on its fourth set of owners... The original founders sold to a PE group, who sold to Calera Capital in 2012 for a $250mn price, partly financed by two BDCs: Ares Capital (ARCC) and Golub Capital (GBDC). In 2016, due to poor financial performance, Calera cut a deal with its lenders, sharing the ownership and Board presence in return for converting some of the debt to Preferred. A few months later, one of the original founders and another senior executive were fired.

As you'd expect details on the Company's recent performance is not available. Nonetheless, we have a picture from the Advantage Data records of how the two BDCs are handling valuation. In toto, the BDCs have $77mn invested at cost, principally still in the form of a unitranche facility (about $52mn) with the rest in the newly minted Preferred and in common equity. The debt is valued around par (ARCC is more aggressive than GBDC in this case). However, the Preferred and common remain written down to essentially zero. We can't take too much comfort from the debt valuation because both BDCs valued the unitranche just prior to the restructuring at only a 10% discount but still converted 25% of the then debt balance to Preferred.

The BDC Credit Reporter has the Company as Under Performing, and with a Corporate Credit Rating of 4 as the risk of failure down the track remains substantial from what we can tell. The Credit Trend-i.e. what this is likely to be valued at in the IVQ-is flat, which reflects the change in the IIIQ from the IIQ and no new public information. Still, this Company-and the substantial investment by two BDCs operating outside of their usual areas of expertise-is well worth watching closely.