Mike Reilly on Active
Written by: Mike Reilly
Date: Thu Nov 08 2012
I wanted to share my thoughts on some of the discussion happening within the Slowtwitch forums about the health of ACTIVE’s business. The real story is that the report being commented on was published by a couple of guys who wanted to short the stock – this was their intention. I am not being asked by anyone at ACTIVE to write this response but I feel it is my duty to this industry to state the facts.
The report is full of misleading information, some of the data is twisted out of context and some of the information is simply wrong. I’m not saying we’re perfect and we have made business mistakes but I’m one of 3,000+ people who work at ACTIVE everyday trying to do what’s best for our customers – we live and breathe this industry and are participants of our customer’s events.
Here are a few facts that will help clear up some confusion about ACTIVE’s financial health. ACTIVE is cash flow positive, and we have no debt. We have a strong balance sheet, so the assertion that we are close to insolvency is not accurate. I also want to address the statement about our Execs selling their ownership stake in the company – this is just not true. Our current Section 16 Officers (our Execs) still maintain significant ownership of ACTIVE; their ownership was 10% at IPO on May 25, 2011 and is now 8%. They are all still very involved and invested in the future of ACTIVE. If this was not true I personally would be looking elsewhere to pursue my passion!
I am not a stockbroker nor maintain that I know more than the average person about the public markets. But the stock is clearly under some pressure and that is because of some information we announced in our Q3 Earnings release last week. We realized that our Outdoors business, which serves campgrounds & hunting/fishing activities, will not grow as fast as we originally predicted and that will impact our overall organic growth rate in 2013. We also revised our outlook for the fourth quarter of this year; we now expect to achieve top line growth of approximately 25% in 2012. This is about 2% off our original projected range.
The public markets are looking for short term versus long term growth and they responded. But, we are in it for the long haul. We won't let this distract us from serving our customers and will continue to work hard to achieve our goals.
Bottom line, we are still a healthy growing business who has been serving the Endurance sports world for over 13 years – we know where we can improve and are working hard to deliver the best experience for our customers and their participants.
Some folks have complained about our ACTIVE Advantage program or offers presented in the online reg forms. Believe me when I say we want to be transparent and make the offers clear so participants make an informed purchase. It is not our intent to be deceptive in any way. If we receive a refund request because someone signed up inadvertently, we refund 100% of their money every time.
If any of you have ever met an ACTIVE team member, you’ve seen the passion they wear on their sleeves. If you have ever had a personal conversation with me, you know I tell it like it is. Some say to me “Mike you take this all too personal.” I say, sure as heck I do - it is my life, and it is our company’s life.
Feel free to check out a video made by our employees about what we do at ACTIVE here.
Thanks for listening and stay ACTIVE.
Vice President – The Active Network
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