Mighty Kingdom lands ‘short-term’ funding and proposes new board appointments

The embattled video game company will raise more than half a million dollars for “short-term capital needs” ahead of a planned extraordinary general meeting in January.

Dec 29, 2023, updated Dec 29, 2023
Photo: Mighty Kingdom

Photo: Mighty Kingdom

The company said it had received commitments for $726,000 through a convertible note issue allowing for “working capital adequency [sic] due to the ‘lumpy’ nature of receipts from clients”.

It has also put forward three names for its proposed board, including the former managing director of Activision Blizzard King APAC Mark Aubrey and former CEO and executive director of Storms Gaming Studio David Yin.

The announcement comes as Mighty Kingdom completed a strategic review, which it hopes will “deliver [a] transformational shift to a high-growth profitable game studio”.

This review led to a letter of intent signed with the consortium of gaming executives to facilitate their appointment to the board of directors.

Mighty Kingdom said the agreement “includes exclusivity arrangements paving the way for a multi-year strategic plan and capital raising and potential appointment to the board of directors and management”.

The new non-executive appointments are subject to the finalisation of due diligence, and Mighty Kingdom hopes they will be appointed officially on or before 15 January.

The news follows a shareholder revolt against the company’s leadership in November, when chair Michele Guthrie was ousted.

Shareholders also voted against the adoption of the remuneration report – detailing executive pay – constituting a “first strike” against the Mighty Kingdom board. If the company receives a second strike next year, shareholders will get the opportunity to spill the board.

The proposed board includes the aforementioned Mark Aubrey and David Yin as non-executive directors. The company has also proposed Animoca brands board member Chris Whiteman and strategy and transformation expert Hang Zhang as non-executive director and strategic plan leader respectively.

“With deep industry experience and a keen eye for growth opportunities, the consortium’s vision for Mighty Kingdom covers all aspects of the transformational path needed to deliver shareholder returns,” Mighty Kingdom said.

“They will provide invaluable assistance in various areas, from corporate initiatives and business development to capital planning.”

Zhang and the proposed non-executive directors will lead the existing Mighty Kingdom management team to develop a strategic plan for the company’s future which will be presented to shareholders by 15 January.

The company added that the proposed new board members were “confident in its ability to spearhead a capital raising process”. They will also support any short-term financing requirements until the company’s capital needs are met.

“A definitive proposal encompassing restructuring, capital raising and board appointments is expected to be ratified at an extraordinary general meeting no later than February 28th, 2024,” Mighty Kingdom said.

In the short term, the company has tapped sophisticated and professional investors for $726,000 through a convertible note secured against Mighty Kingdom’s Digital Gaming Tax Offset.

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“It is noted that conventional debt and equity structures were not available to the company due to requisitioning shareholders led by Imagination Entertainment Limited calling an extraordinary general meeting of the company and a lack of equity issuance capacity when this resolution was voted down at the company’s 2023 Annual General Meeting,” Mighty Kingdom said.

“The capital raising was very well supported including the involvement of the proposed new directors of the company and existing shareholders.”

The video game developer still has to get through an extraordinary general meeting on 19 January, which was called by major shareholder Imagination Entertainment – a games company founded by Adelaide businessman Shane Yeend who spearheaded the Guthrie coup.

Mighty Kingdom urged shareholders to vote against the resolutions proposed by Yeend, which aim to remove all of the current board members and to appoint four new directors as named by Imagination.

Yeend is gunning for a seat on the board, alongside three others including Enterprise Corporation managing director Roseanne Healy, Middleton Group managing director and founder Keith Middleton and investment advisor Boris Patkin.

Today, Mighty Kingdom chair David Butorac, who stepped into the role after Guthrie departed, said the proposed consortium of leaders would “set the future direction of Mighty Kingdom in collaboration with our existing team”.

“Our plan, to be presented by January 15th, will chart a clear course for growth and unlock the company’s immense potential,” Butorac said.

“Details of a capital raising plan will be presented alongside the strategic plan, ensuring full transparency and shareholder involvement in shaping the company’s trajectory.

“These partnerships bring not just financial strength but also deep industry knowledge and connections, opening doors to exciting opportunities for growth and collaboration.”

Yin said Mighty Kingdom held a “special place in the hearts of many”.

“Despite past challenges, the company has demonstrated commendable recent performance. Mark, Chris and I are confident that, collaborating with the current board, management team, and implementing the strategic transformational plan, we foresee significant favourable outcomes for the benefit of all shareholders,” Yin said.

“On behalf of the whole group we are excited to be a part of the future direction of Mighty Kingdom and using our industry experience to unlock the opportunities to grow this company.

“We will be working hard with the MKL team over the coming weeks to finalise agreements and be in a position to articulate this to all shareholders. We are confident that this will be an exciting and attractive proposition.”

Mighty Kingdom first announced the strategic review in October, and at the time said it was considering a “whole or partial divestment” of the business. It also announced a $1 million capital raise at the time.

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