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Basch Report
Jax Daily Record Thursday, Jan. 14, 202105:10 AM EST

Company selling shares of Van Zant home

The owner of the childhood home of the legendary rockers is seeking investors.
by: Mark Basch Contributing Writer

While a couple of large Jacksonville companies entered 2021 with initial public offerings pending, several smaller firms also filed plans for stock sales late last year.

The latest is a company called Van Zant House Inc., owner of a Westside Jacksonville property where brothers Ronnie, Johnny and Donnie Van Zant grew up.

It’s an iconic site for Southern Rock music fans. Ronnie was a founder and lead singer of Lynyrd Skynyrd, who died with five others in 1977 when the band’s plane crashed in Mississippi.

When the band reformed 10 years later, his younger brother Johnny took over as lead singer.

Donnie, the middle brother, founded his own band, 38 Special.

Their childhood home is now a multifamily property at 5419 Woodcrest Road with five units, four of which are occupied by permanent residents.

“The fifth, ‘main house’ unit serves as a furnished vacation rental for fans of the bands Lynyrd Skynyrd and .38 Special,” according to a Form C Securities and Exchange Commission filing last month.

Form C is used for small companies wanting to sell shares through crowdfunding.

Van Zant House is seeking to raise $300,000 to $500,000 in the offering. Part of the proceeds will be used to pay off the mortgage on the property.

The company’s sole owner is Todd Smith, a Jacksonville Beach investor who bought the property in 2015, according to the filing.

The house is being restored to look like it did in the 1960s and 1970s when the brothers were forming their bands, “with a few modern touches,” according to the company’s website.

“Inside this main house, you’ll find some cool memorabilia, a vintage 1938 Brunswick pool table, and a retro 70’s feel, to remind us all of the way things were, with a hint of nostalgia,” it said.

The SEC filing said Van Zant House recorded $50,972 in revenue in its most recent fiscal year.

“Bookings in 2020 have been very solid, pandemic notwithstanding,” it said.

At least two other Jacksonville businesses filed for Form C stock sales in 2020: TrippBio Inc., which is developing drugs to fight infectious diseases, and Tezcat LLC, owner of the Tepeyolot Cerveceria brewpub in San Marco.

Two large Jacksonville companies have conventional IPOs pending. Homebuilder Dream Finders Homes Inc. filed to sell up to $165.6 million in stock in an IPO that is expected to reach the market next week.

Southeastern Grocers Inc., owner of Winn-Dixie and three other supermarket chains, also has an IPO pending. An updated registration statement filed Jan. 12 gave no more details on when the IPO will be completed or how much stock will be sold.

CBD firm moves to Jacksonville

Jacksonville gained another public company last week without an IPO when Acquired Sales Corp. said in an SEC filing it moved its executive office from Lake Forest, Illinois, to Jacksonville.

The company said in a recent news release it “is focused upon investing in rapidly growing companies that make hemp-derived, cannabinoid-infused products.”

Acquired Sales had no revenue in 2019 but in February 2020 it acquired a CBD-infused product company called Warrender Enterprise Inc., which does business under the brand name Lifted Made.

The company also has minority investments in other companies and recorded revenue of $3.1 million in the first nine months of 2020.

Acquired Sales trades on the OTCQB Venture Market under the ticker symbol “AQSP”.

Tegna gets $50 million from Georgia runoff

The U.S. Senate runoff elections in Georgia were icing on the cake for television station operator Tegna Inc., which said political ads helped it generate record revenue in the fourth quarter.

Total fourth-quarter revenue jumped 34% to 35% to $932 million to $937 million, Tegna said last week. 

The quarter included only about one month of general election advertising but with the Jan. 5 Georgia runoff, Tegna received an additional $50 million in political ad revenue. Total political advertising revenue was $264 million in the quarter.

Tegna operates 64 televisions stations in 51 markets, including WTLV TV-12 and WJXX TV-25 in Jacksonville which broadcast campaign ads targeting its Southeastern Georgia viewers.

Tegna also owns two stations in Atlanta and one in Georgia.

Net income in the quarter nearly tripled to $246 million to $251 million, the company said.

While political advertising will drop off significantly this year, Tegna said it expects big growth in subscription revenue, which include fees paid by cable and satellite providers to carry its stations.

Tegna said it expects 2021 subscription revenue to grow by a mid-to-high teens percentage.

Tegna reached a new agreement with AT&T last month after a standoff that kept Tegna’s stations off AT&T’s services, including satellite provider DirecTV, for more than two weeks.

The companies did not announce terms of the deal.

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