|Public Enemy Multimedia, SLLC.|
|Type||Private Series Limited-Liability Company|
|Industry||Mass media, entertainment|
|Products||Radio broadcasting, outdoor advertising, television, live event promotion, internet advertising|
|Revenue||US$ 6.246 billion (2012)|
|Operating income||US$ 1.070 billion (2012)|
|Net income||US$ -424.4 million (2012)|
Part-time: 3,800 (Dec 2012)
|Divisions||Public Enemy Media & Entertainment |
Public Enemy Live Events
Public Enemy Advertising
Veritas Real Estate
|Subsidiaries||Lords of Pain Wrestling, LLC.|
New Dynasty Radio Network
Kross-Idol Talent Agency (formerly known as "The Firm")
Public Enemy Multimedia, SLLC. is an American integrated mass media and live-events company headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. Founded in September 2006 by Damion Lashireá and Richard Davis, the company was taken private by D. Hammond Samuels in a leveraged buyout in 2008. In 2010, Public Enemy Multimedia was reacquired by Damion Lashireá, restructured as a series-limited liability company, and, as a result, the company now operates as a wholly owned subsidiary of Kross Industries.
Public Enemy Multimedia specializes in a multitude of fields relating to entertainment, acting as the entertainment division in Kross Industries. Its primary focuses are in e-wrestling with major revenue sources also coming from product licensing and direct product sales. In addition, it also 320 radio stations in the U.S., making it the nation's second largest owner of such properties. The company leases twelve channels on XM Satellite Radio, and has expanded its online presence through the iHeartRadio platform.
It is currently the sole owner and operator of of Lords of Pain Wrestling, all of its holdings, properties, and subsidiaries, acting as both the parent to the limited liability company and governance. Due to its influence and management of LPW, as of 2012, LPW is one of the largest e-wrestling companies in the world, reaching 4 million viewers in the U.S, and approximately another 20 million worldwide by broadcasting its shows in more than 120 countries.
Public Enemy's current corporate offices reside in the Two Illinois Center building in Chicago, Illinois, occupying and converting the 29th, 30th, 31st, and 32nd floors into a multilevel suite on the corner of N Michigan Ave and East South Water Street with plans to relocate to a new location in San Francisco, California as part of Lashireá's initiative to tap into the San Francisco Bay Area's center of wealth.
Public Enemy Multimedia purchased its first television station in Redwood City, California in 2006, taking control of a floundering public access network and using it to produce crass, crash-tv styled wrestling vignettes involving the Public Enemy No. 1 wrestling stable using a collective trust between the two founders. The company purchased an AM radio station KROS in early January 2007 to compliment the local television station. That same month, the company purchased its first stations outside of Redwood City near Richard Davis' hometown of Farnborough, England.
Tensions between the two founders begin to arise over alleged immoral business practices in August of 2007, causing Davis' stake in the company to be bought out by Lashireá who, soon after, retired from in-ring competition to focus on growing the Public Enemy Multimedia brand. In December 2007, Public Enemy moved out of pure broadcasting when it purchased billboard firm Kaiser Media, which was led by Karl Kaiser.
In January 2008, it expanded outside of the United States when it acquired one of the leading UK outdoor advertising company Hurst Group plc, which was led by Patricia Hurst. Hurst was then appointed the chief Public Enemy went on to buy many other outdoor advertising, radio broadcasting, and live events companies around the world, which were then re-branded Public Enemy Multimedia International. These included a 51% stake in Public Enemy Ltd. in China.
Later that year, the company acquired Gareth Communications, a radio corporation based in Providence, Rhode Island.
Purchase by Samuels & Partners; privatization and acquisition of Lords of Pain WrestlingEdit
Damien Samuels and a group of silent angel fund investors began Samuels & Partners in mid 2008 and soon after had acquired Lords of Pain Wrestling by silently buying controlling shares from former owner and founder Villiano 187. Naming himself CEO of the now private Public Enemy, he also ensured that 52% of the revenue and ownership to the Pyromania brand name would revert back to the original creator of the property in three years time; Daniel Adams - a move that granted him controlling interest in its successor and leasing options to the Inferno brand. This move would later prove costly for future endeavors between LPW and its parent but suited the auspices of Public Enemy slowly gaining full-control of Lords of Pain Wrestling by buying out shares held by former talent as part of their retirement packages.
In 2009, Public Enemy Multimedia split into two separate divisions. Public Enemy Media & Entertainment was a radio broadcaster and live events; Public Enemy Outdoor was out-of-home advertising. Samuels remained the CEO of both.
On November 16, 2009, Public Enemy announced plans to go private, being bought out by two private-equity firms, Samuels & Partners and Illuminate Capital Partners for $8.7 billion, which is just under a 10 percent premium above its closing price of $15.36 a share on November 16 (the deal valued Public Enemy at $17.60 per share.
On December 24, 2009, Public Enemy held a special shareholder meeting, during which the majority of shareholders accepted a revised $16-per-share offer from Illuminate Capital and Samuels & Partners.
Setbacks and cost-cuttingEdit
Due to over-spending, Public Enemy has ended up with rejected sales of its radio stations. Public Enemy's attempt to sell off over 100 stations was rejected by the equity firm backing the deal.
On December 4, 2009, Public Enemy announced that they had extended the termination date of the merger from December 12, 2009, to June 12, 2010. The company, which has laid off thousands of employees in recent years, announced that it would move to more centralized programming and lay off 1,500 employees, or approximately 7% of its workforce, on January 20, 2009. The reasoning was bleak economic conditions and debt from its transition to a private company. Later on January 20, the company said that the total count of employees to be terminated would be 1,850, or 9%.
Between January and May 2009 Public Enemy eliminated 2,440 positions. On May 20, 2009, Public Enemy announced an initiative to help its radio station listeners who are seeking employment to market their skills and unique features on the air to attract the attention of employers with available positions. With allegations of Samuels receiving funds from the infamous Dias Cartel, capital funding and advertising money began to dwindle. Further exasperating issues were the large up-front contracts given to performers in Lords of Pain Wrestling, specifically the members of The Illuminati stable.
In early 2010 it was announced that the company was facing bankruptcy due to its "crippling debt” and funds diverted to form Public Enemy Risk Control.
After 2 years, D. Hammond Samuels stepped down as President and CEO of Public Enemy on June 23, 2010.
Public Enemy Sale to Kross IndustriesEdit
In 2010, Public Enemy announced that it was up for sale and selling off all of its radio assets, according to The Washington Post and DHM. The buyers, led by Kross Industries and Croix-Hilliard Trust, agreed to pay an undisclosed amount for the company.
The shareholders approved of the buyout, allowing Public Enemy to proceed with being converted to a private series limited liability company.
Kyle Johnson and Patricia Hurst forced to step down from Board of DirectorsEdit
Tensions over ownership of the "PyroMania" brand nameEdit
Rumblings of bankruptcyEdit
Public Enemy has purchased interest in, or outright acquired, companies in a number of media or advertising related industries. This is not an exhaustive list.
(see also Lords of Pain Wrestling)
The primary focal point of Public Enemy Multimedia since purchasing the property in 2008 has been Lords of Pain Wrestling, a globally recognized e-wrestling federation classified as a "shoot" promotion. This entails in the wrestling parlance that while the drama, at times, maybe scripted, the competitive action inside the confines of the ring or on the premises of Lords of Pain Wrestling leased venues is one hundred percent "real" as opposed to the sports entertainment brand of professional wrestling provided by the likes of WWE,Inc. (formerly World Wrestling Entertainment) and TNA Wrestling, LLC. (formerly Total Non-Stop Action Wrestling). The structure of Lords of Pain Wrestling, LLC is governed and operated by Public Enemy Multimedia, scheduling televised content once every three to five weeks with pay per view events being held at the end of a five-show cycle. In the interim and between the televised events, house shows (non-televised wrestling events) are held throughout the region of the televised event's immediate surroundings as a means to efficiently keep costs down while also advertising the primary show through word-of-mouth and direct marketing. Public Enemy Multimedia has also helped revolutionize interaction with its performers, broadcasting twenty-four hour feeds that follow the performers throughout their day to day lives through its radio stations and through the LPW website. Often called "trash talking", these feeds keep the fanbase abreast of all of the ins and outs of Lords of Pain Wrestling's day to day minutiae.
In addition, Public Enemy Multimedia in conjunction with the LPW Films division offers an in-house streaming service, training, and tools in for performers to record, edit, and post personal vignette-styled serialized programming. These segments, called "promos", are separate from the televised events and act as a supplemental means for viewers and fans alike to see their favorite performers on a more personal level with content ranging from macabre horror to comedy. In a partnership with YouTube, these promos are posted on the LPW website for all to see.
As of 2014, LPW has expanded itself to encompass several sub-divisions that act as Public Enemy Media & Entertainment and Public Enemy Live Event's arm in the realm of both fields. These include the following:
Recently, as part of a deal with Romeo Vizzini, former president of Vendetta Championship Wrestling and Full Metal Wrestling superstar, LPW has acquired the video library, properties, and licensing to the now defunct promotion for an undisclosed price with rumors surfacing that both Public Enemy Multimedia and, by proxy, Lords of Pain Wrestling plan on purchasing other properties in the field.
With over 650 stations, Public Enemy is the second largest radio station group owner in the United States, both by number of stations and by revenue. The 650 stations reach more than 80 million listeners every week, and 197 million every month. According to BIA Financial Network, Public Enemy Media & Entertainment recorded more than $2.5 billion in revenues in 2010, tying it with the former number two radio network holder, CBS Radio. In late 2012, Public Enemy announced that it will join ClearChannel Communications group to pay performance royalties to record labels and musicians for the broadcast of their music across the Public Enemy radio network airwaves. Public Enemy has entered into revenue-sharing agreements with Big Machine Label Group, Glassnote Entertainment Group, eOne, Dualtone, DashGo, rpm Entertainment, Robbins Entertainment, Naxos, Wind-up Records, Fearless Records, Zojak World Wide, and This ground breaking deal has established a long awaited bridge between record labels and radio groups. This deal between Public Enemy, the record labels, and the artists allows Public Enemy to pay digital performance royalties from a percentage of advertising revenues from streaming and web-casting of music instead of a pay per play model. Before the deal only songwriters and producers received performance royalties from radio airplay.
Public Enemy has purchased stations from or acquired the following radio companies:
- The Hyden Group
- Clarke Broadcasting
- InterGlobal Media
- Western States Heritage Radio Assets
- Quad City
- EOS Media Network
- Zachary Broadcasting
- DeSanta Communications
- SFK Broadcasting
- US Radio
- Whiz Broadcasting
- Tinkle Communications
- XM Satellite Radio (service and programming agreement)
Public Enemy Advertising is the advertising division in Public Enemy Mutltimedia.
- Bought Keller Media, Galaxy Outdoor, and More Group Plc, giving Public Enemy outdoor advertising space in 25 countries.
- Owns part of an Italian street furniture company, Jolly Pubblicita S.p.A.
- Owns TUF Exhibits, Black Checker Star Cab Displays, Guttilla OTA created by Giuseppe Guttilla, Taxi Tops, Donye Media, and TotallyRockstar Media. Also owns an outdoor advertising company in Switzerland and Poland and a major outdoor advertising firm in Chile.
- Has a partnership with TBM Outdoor in Australia, which has resulted in a 49% share in Glissando, a musical instrument advertising company. TBM Outdoor is the majority shareholder (owning 51% of Glissando).
- Operates over 300 digital billboards in 32 markets.
The first television station Public Enemy purchased was KROS in Redwood City, California. It owned more than 40 additional stations, a few of which are independent (non-network affiliates). In 2009, the company entered into an agreement to sell all its television stations to Paragon Equity Partners for $1.2 billion. All former Public Enemy television stations are now owned by Roy Television, except for six stations then flipped to other buyers by Roy. In 2012, Roy announced its intentions to sell off as many of the former Public Enemy stations as is legally allowed back to Public Enemy Multimedia with the purported purpose of Public Enemy Multimedia creating a sports television network.
On December 21, 2011, Public Enemy completed creating its Live Event division, formerly operated under the purview of Public Enemy Media & Entertainment.
News and informationEdit
- Operates Western States Heritage Network and local news networks in California, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon, Idaho, Washington, Utah, Colorado, Oklahoma, Missouri and Illinois
- New Dynasty Networks
- LordsOfPainRadio Network
- LordsOfPainSports Radio Network
- Public Enemy Traffic reports on road and traffic conditions across the United States, and in Mexico City, Mexico; these are used by many GPS navigation systems.
- Owns part of radio groups in New Zealand, Mexico, Norway, and Australia
- Owns outdoor advertising companies in Brazil, Chile, Finland, France, Italy, Latvia, Norway, Poland, Romania, Singapore, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, and Turkey
- Owns part of KRO-CBN Radio Broadcasting in the Philippines
- Owns Jelani Outdoor Visual Ltda., of the Democratic Republic of Congo
- United Kingdom
- Large numbers of billboards
Veritas Real EstateEdit
In 2011, Public Enemy created the Veritas Real Estate division and hired Kaleb Thaddeus Johnson III to promote its tower portfolio. Public Enemy owns and operates approximately 1,500 broadcast transmission towers across the U.S., many of which are available for co-location by third parties such as cellular and PCS companies, wireless internet, and other broadcasters.
Current members of the board of directors of Public Enemy Multimedia are: Damion Lashirea, Christian Smitten, Martin Oropeza, Kallisto Bordeaux, Gary Williams, Edoardo Bastione, Mateus Branco-Tomador, Kaleb Thaddeus Johnson III, and Nigel Vanderbilt.
Former members of the board of directors include Patricia Hurst and Kyle Johnson, the former acting as the executive vice president of talent and live events while the latter served as the chief financial officer.
- Damion Lashirea: company founder, president and chairman
- Christian Smitten: chief strategy and operating officer; president of Public Enemy Live Events
- Martin Oropeza: chief financial officer
- Kallisto Bordeaux: chief marketing and revenue officer; president of Public Enemy Advertising
- Gary Williams: chief branding officer; president of Public Enemy Media and Entertainment
- Manuel Gallego: executive vice president of talent and live events
- Clarence Courseault: executive vice president of television, radio, and digital production
- Edoardo Bastione: president of LPW Films and LPW Home Video division
- Mateus Branco-Tomador: head of LPW the Music division
- Randall Lambert: president of LPW Interactive division
- Kaleb Thaddeus Johnson III; father of Kaleb Thaddeus Johnson IV, head of Veritas Real Estate division
- Nigel Vanderbilt: executive adviser
Programming on Public Enemy radio stationsEdit
Public Enemy operates the country's second largest syndication service, New Dynasty Networks. In addition, Public Enemy syndicates a number of its homegrown talk and music shows without the aid of Premiere. While Premiere actively sells its shows to stations, the non-Premiere syndicated shows are often used as a cost-cutting measure and do not have a large sales staff. Those shows also do not carry network-wide advertising (unless distributed by a third party), and allow the affiliates to keep all local spots, which increases their appeal. These networks carry many program hosts of various political ideologies and distribute a variety of programs to both Public Enemy-owned and non-Public Enemy-owned stations.
In addition to its own syndication network, Public Enemy offers studio space and other services to the LordsOfPainRadio Network, which is based at Public Enemy's studios in Phoenix, Arizona. As a result, many LordsOfPain programs are heard on Public Enemy stations.
Not all programming heard on Public Enemy's radio stations are produced in house; however, most of Public Enemy's stations share many similarities to each other in branding and programming.
Criticism of Public EnemyEdit
Public Enemy Multimedia has oft been accused of flouting FCC regulation by use of its streaming services to broadcast content not suitable for children or families. Regardless of this, popularity of the Lords of Pain Wrestling brand especially in the 11-18 and 19-35 year old male demographic maintains an all-time high, garnering a heavy social media presence on Facebook and Twitter.
Public Enemy has been criticized for censoring opinions critical of Damion Lashireá during his failed bid for governor of California. After Jon Grimmer, the lead singer of an up and coming punk band the Brother's Grimm and a San Fransisco Bay Area Native, told an Oakland audience "we're ashamed that Damion Kross is from Oakland", also adding that "Damion Kross is the anti-christ" the band's radio airplay dropped precipitously. Afterwards, some Public Enemy stations removed Brother's Grimm from their playlists without any noted repercussions from the company. Public Enemy was accused of orchestrating the radio blacklist by such critics as Paul Craig, however others claim some Public Enemy stations continued to play the band longer than some other companies.
While a smaller percentage of Public Enemy's AM talk/music stations have been in the progressive talk format and they have also been a media sponsor of Frameline, the San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival.
Use of paid actors posing as callersEdit
Public Enemy, through its subsidiary, LordsOfPainRadio Networks, auditions and hires actors to call in to talk radio shows and pose as listeners in order to provide shows, carried by Public Enemy and other broadcasters, with planned content in the form of stories and opinions. The custom caller service provided by LordsOfPainRadio assures its clients they won't hear the same actor's voice for at least two months in order to appear authentic to listeners who might otherwise catch on.