Concierge Technologies Inc., which has traditionally focused on importing and selling driving cameras, has acquired a food business as a means to grow revenue.
In August, the company closed a deal for New Zealand-based Gourmet Foods Ltd., which makes and distributes meat pies, dessert and other bakery products. "It's not the kind of business that's going to take over the world, but it is a good cash-flow generating business, Concierge CEO Nicholas Gerber tells Mergers & Acquisitions.
The deal is the company's first move in a shift away from the camera business, which experienced years of losses.
Valley Center, California-based Concierge has a history of losses, which led accounting firm Kabani & Co. Inc. to raise substantial doubt about Concierge's ability to continue as a going concern, or without the threat of liquidation, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Oct. 9. Concierge has incurred cumulative losses of more than $6.3 million.
The company incurred a bigger loss for the year ended June 30 ($204,216) than the previous year ($176,332), which it attributes to costs incurred when trying to raise equity capital, coupled with loan interest, according to a filing with the SEC.
The business was recapitalized with $3 million earlier this year.
Concierge since divested most of the camera segment back to management through a company called Janus Cam. "We hate losses, and that business had losses … so we sold it to the management," Gerber says.
Concierge's ongoing camera business is run through subsidiary Kahnalystrics Inc., which imports, sells, distributes and installs high-definition digital-video recorders with GPS mapping, audio recording, wireless broadcasting, playback and security features. The goal is to provide a recorded driving record that could be pulled up in the event of a car accident or other problem. The cameras are sold mainly to taxi companies.
That unit currently has one customer, according to Gerber. Concierge is considering expanding through the addition of a new camera – if the company decides to import that model, the business will look for more customers, Gerber says.
But for now, Concierge's focus is on Gourmet Foods and finding new entrepreneur-run businesses to acquire. "We are recreating the conglomerate model," Gerber says. "We are talking to other businesses that are started by entrepreneurs who want to keep running the businesses, but who think it's time for an ownership change."
For the previous edition of Turnaround Tuesday, see NYSE Warns American Apparel of Delisting, Calling Continued Operation "Questionable." For a list of troubled companies, see Mergers & Acquisitions' Distressed Company Watch List.