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Funko brings back Brian Mariotti as CEO, Perlmutter to become president

Yahoo Finance Live anchors discuss the exec shakeup at Funko.

Video Transcript

[AUDIO LOGO]

BRIAN SOZZI: Welcome back. Let's hit a few Yahoo Finance turning tickers out of the opening bell. First up, is Funko. Guys, pretty strange, I would say, release from the company late yesterday. They're bringing back, really for all intents and purposes, the founder of Funko, in my view, Brian Mariotti and also the former CEO, replacing Andrew Perlmutter who just took over in January of this year as CEO.

Really coming after a disappointing third quarter and warning. I think, the company has been dealing with execution mishaps. But it also comes given, I think, there's a new board member on there The Chernin Group. They took a 25% stake in Funko earlier this year. And it's likely them pushing for better financial outcomes and trying to tap back into that magic of Mariotti.

But look, it also continues the year of boomerang CEOs. We've had Disney bringing back its former CEO, Starbucks, now Funko. These lists continue to pile up.

BRAD SMITH: Yeah, $263 million investment that The Chernin Group, TCG, made. And for right now, the early partnership that they tried to drum up, even on the outside of that purchase of the 25% share of the company, they had been looking to sell through, get this, eBay. Sell more through eBay. And of course, eBay was one of the other major investors within that particular round.

But it also comes at a time where people aren't necessarily going to-- or at least the top selling items this holiday season aren't Funko or tabletop dolls and figurines right now. If you're looking at some of the lists that come out from Adobe, it's LEGOs, it's PlayStation 5, Hot Wheels, "Madden '23." Funko not on that list.

BRIAN SOZZI: Well, this really, I think, just raises the long time question on Funko, should it be part of another brand? Should this brand be part of a Hasbro or Mattel where they can better leverage some of the IP in this business and create more toys. Maybe take them to television more often. Make some movies. But again, I'm sure they'll be figured out at some point.

JULIE HYMAN: But make some movies? But all their stuff is other stuff.

BRIAN SOZZI: Yes.

BRAD SMITH: Yeah.

JULIE HYMAN: In other words, they've already--

BRIAN SOZZI: They've made movies.

JULIE HYMAN: --licensed all of their characters--

BRIAN SOZZI: It's already licensed. Yup.

JULIE HYMAN: --from other places. It's just the form that it takes. I mean, remember Funko was also-- and this seemed like a natural fit-- getting into things like NFTs and the whole crypto landscape, which makes sense for collectibles. But maybe a lot less sense right now at this point that we're at in that cycle.

BRIAN SOZZI: And the other interesting aspect here, they brought Andrew in, I think, to focus on operations. He seemed--

BRAD SMITH: Yeah.

BRIAN SOZZI: --certainly capable when he came on with us. Just I guess couldn't get it done. And Brian wanted to focus on creative. So now you have the creative guy coming back at a time when they probably need someone to focus on operations.

JULIE HYMAN: And the CEO, by the way, is not leaving. Perlmutter is not leaving.

BRIAN SOZZI: He's staying on the board, too.

JULIE HYMAN: He's gonna be the president--

BRIAN SOZZI: Right.

JULIE HYMAN: --of the company still, which is interesting--

BRIAN SOZZI: Yes.

JULIE HYMAN: --'cos you don't usually see that, right?

BRIAN SOZZI: No.

JULIE HYMAN: That, that person sticks around.

BRAD SMITH: And they're creating a chief operating officer role as part of this, too.

BRIAN SOZZI: Yep.

JULIE HYMAN: Yeah. So interesting announcement here.