Stock Certificate, issued/uncanceled1990'sAmerican Bank Note CompanyThe item shown is representative of the piece you will receive
Marvel Entertainment Group, Inc. was the parent company of Marvel Comics and Marvel Productions, and was put up for sale as part of the liquidation of its then parent corporation, Cadence Industries, and sold in 1986 to New World Pictures. In 1989, Ronald Perelman's MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings group of companies bought Marvel Entertainment Group from New World for $82.5 million, not including Marvel Productions, which was folded into New World's TV and movie business.
"It is a mini-Disney
in terms of intellectual property," said Perelman. "Disney's got much more highly recognized characters and softer characters, whereas our characters are termed action heroes. But at Marvel we are now in the business of the creation and marketing of characters."
Marvel made an initial public offering (ticker symbol NYSE:MRV) in July 1991, and within a year, purchased the trading card company Fleer. In April 1993, Marvel acquired 46% of ToyBiz
, for the rights to make Marvel toys. The Andrews Group named Avi Arad of ToyBiz as the president and CEO of the Marvel Films division and of New World Family Filmworks, Inc., a New World Entertainment subsidiary. New World later became a fellow subsidiary of the Andrews Group.
Marvel later purchased Heroes World Distribution, a regional distributor to comic-book shops. Marvel's attempt to distribute its products directly led to a decrease in sales and aggravated the losses which Marvel suffered when the comic book bubble popped. The 1994 Major League Baseball strike massacred the profits of the Fleer unit, and Panini, an Italian sticker making company Marvel had purchased, whose revenue depended largely on Disney licensing, was hobbled by poor Disney showings at the box office.
In June 1997, Marvel formed its Marvel Enterprise division, headed by president and CEO Scott C. Marden, to manage its trading card and sticker businesses, as well as Marvel Interactive, an Internet-entertainment and software-publishing company.
On February 18, 1998, Marvel and co-owner Universal Studios Hollywood opened Marvel Mania Restaurant near Universal Studios in California, as well as Planet Hollywood
. However, Planet Hollywood had financial problems due to expanding too quickly, and the company eventually closed Marvel Mania.
ToyBiz and Marvel Entertainment Group were merged into Marvel Enterprises to bring it out of bankruptcy in June 1998. As part of this merger plan, Fleer/SkyBox and Panini were auctioned off separately.
Later, the rights to names like "Spider-Man" were being challenged. Toy Biz hired an attorney to review its license agreement. Los Angeles patent attorney Carole E. Handler found a legal loophole in the licensing of the Marvel name and was successful in reclaiming Marvel Enterprises' movie rights to its character Spider-Man.
In September 2005, Marvel Enterprises changed its name to Marvel Entertainment to reflect the corporation's expansion into financing its own movie slate. In 2007, several Stan Lee Media related groups filed lawsuits against Marvel Entertainment for $1 billion and for Lee's Marvel creations in multiple states most of which have been dismissed. Additionally, a lawsuit over ownership of the character Ghost Rider was filed on March 30, 2007, by Gary Friedrich and Gary Friedrich Enterprises, Inc.
On August 31, 2009, The Walt Disney Company announced a deal to acquire Marvel Entertainment for $4.24 billion. The voting occurred on December 31, 2009 and the merger was approved. The acquisition of Marvel was finalized hours after the shareholder vote, therefore giving Disney full ownership of Marvel Entertainment. The company was delisted from the New York Stock Exchange under its ticker symbol (MVL), due to the closing of the deal.
Some of the company’s iconic properties include X-Men, The Fantastic Four, Howard the Duck, Blade, Captain America, Spider-Man, The Hulk, Iron Man, Ghost Rider, The Wolverine, Thor and the current ABC
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