Livermore could also push the TV and film content and distribution company into a sale of the entire business if the fund does not see a reversal in strategy within the next 12 months, Livermore Managing Director David Neuhauser said.
Based in Toronto with its shares listed in London, Entertainment One has announced a string of acquisitions and joint ventures in recent years. EOne, as the brand is known, also revealed plans last year to acquire a majority stake in Astley Baker Davies, producer of the popular preschool franchise Peppa Pig.
The company has been rapidly growing its revenue, but some investors and analysts have been getting concerned that it might be putting sales growth ahead of profits and debt management.
Livermore recently bought a stake in the company and has begun engaging with some top executives. Last week, Neuhauser wrote to Darren Throop, chief executive of Entertainment One.
“The equity looks dislocated from the recent moves you have exercised to further your hold on the Peppa Pig franchise and its global growth potential,” he said in a copy of the letter seen by Reuters.
Entertainment One’s high-profile partnerships in recent years include those with DreamWorks Studios and production company Mark Gordon Co.
Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, one of the world’s largest pension funds, is the biggest shareholder in the company. Wednesday’s closing share price for Entertainment One is down 44 percent from the that CPPIB paid when it bought 52.9 million shares in September. It has added to its stake since, and now owns almost 20 percent.
Throop did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Spokespeople at Entertainment One and CPPIB declined comment.
“They don’t view themselves as being overlevered. I do,” Neuhauser said in an interview. “Unless they prove otherwise, they’ll have to scale back.
“I want to see a leaner, more-focused entity that can compete globally with the likes of Lions Gate.”