Gen Con For Sale? A Purchase Offer is Pending!

A “Letter of Intent for the Purchase of the Assets of Gen Con LLC Chapter 11” was filed on 11-20-2008 with the bankruptcy court. The “Letter of Intent”  is a summary of the terms and conditions of a potential  Gen Con purchase by the “Gen Con Acquisition Group.”  I summarized the highlights below and have a download link for the original document at the bottom of this post.

  • The purchase price is the amount sufficient to pay off all of Gen Con’s outstanding claims (debts.)
  • Buyer will pay $500,000.00 on closing day and $400,000.00 30 days later. Then $400,000.00 every six months until all claims are paid in full.
  • They buyer is paying 6% interest on all claims, payable from the date of closing.
  • Buyer will pay the Make-A-Wish charity claim, plus 6% interest from the initial date of claim
  • Buyer will purchase all contracts, rights, licenses, intellectual property, leases and franchise agreements. (This is a partial list, check the original for the full list, but it is basically everything Gen Con owns.)
  • Closing date is December 31st, 2008

Gen Con accomplishes two things by this sale. Primarily they escape bankruptcy, since the purchase price is the cost of Gen Con’s outstanding debt. Secondly, Gen Con LLC and by extension, Peter Atkison will no longer own Gen Con. An earlier Chapter 11 reorganization filing, made mention of attempts to sell Gen Con before the bankruptcy filing that failed and how Mr. Atkison was not as involved in the day to day operations as he once was.  This sounds like a winning solution for all parties.

I am especially happy that the “Make-A-Wish” charity receives their promised monies. I always felt that this debt to a worthy charity cast a pall over Gen Con.

It is also likely that this pending sale  was a factor in the dismissal of Lucasfilm v. Gen Con.  Since the buyer promises to pay off all debts, which includes Lucasfilm, the court case is pointless. Assuming Lucasfilm’s attorneys knew of the pending sale and approved, it also implies that the offer is sincere and backed up with sufficient funds. I am not a lawyer, but I would not dismiss my case unless I checked that the buyer had enough money to complete the purchase contract and pay the debt owed to my client.

The buyer, “Gen Con Acquisition Group” is identified by name, but the document does not list the members or backers of the group. The document lists the group as “to be formed,” so there is probably no paper trail on it yet, but I tried to find something nonetheless.  The letter of intent has this line,” This LOI shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.” The lawyer that filed the LOI resides in Kentucky. Starting from those clues, I did some checking on the Kentucky Secretary of State’s website and checked for trademark, business licenses or LLC filings for the “Gen Con Acquisition Group.” There was nothing. I hope future filings reveal more information about this group.

Remember, this is all still in the realm of a potential sale. There are many hurdles to clear before Gen Con changes hands. I just hope the new owners are worthy stewards of this gaming institution.

“Letter of Intent for the Purchase of the Assets of Gen Con LLC Chapter 11”

Trask, The Last Tyromancer



Trask is a long-time gamer, world traveler and history buff. He hopes that his scribblings will both inform and advance gaming as a hobby.

24 thoughts on “Gen Con For Sale? A Purchase Offer is Pending!

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  • November 24, 2008 at 3:38 pm

    I just hope the new owners will bring Gen Con to Louisville and take it out of Indiana.

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  • November 24, 2008 at 6:48 pm

    that is a fairly tidy sum. what’s the full price?

  • November 24, 2008 at 8:16 pm

    So you want it to become even worse? It’s just settling into Indy, and the Indy locals are far more supportive of it than the Milwaukeens ever were.

    But you’re hoping it’s already being uprooted AGAIN??

    I suppose you change houses before you unpack all your boxes as well, even when your newest house is far more convenient, pretty, and accommodating than the last, just because you’re not used to the new furniture layout?

  • November 24, 2008 at 8:27 pm

    Louisville wouldn’t be a game-ender for me (nice place!), but I live in Indy, so I’d hope it’d stay put. But I guess that’s all premature. 🙂

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  • November 25, 2008 at 10:41 am

    Aleric I feel for you man. I know how hard that 2 HOUR DRIVE from Louis to Indy is man.

  • November 25, 2008 at 10:59 am

    Anyone else notice that the acronym for “Gencon Aquisition Group” is GAG? So what’s with this secretive new GAG?

  • November 25, 2008 at 7:09 pm

    Way to go Peter! Your personal greed and complete and total lack of concern for the gamers (what the hades was the VIG but a thinly vieled attempt to milk more money from people in the hopes of making people forget how crappy of a job you did!) drove this convention into the ground! I hope you are proud of what you did. I hope the new owners permanently ban you from GenCon. That is assuming that the convention survives this.

  • November 25, 2008 at 7:35 pm

    Aside from gamers themselves, what other gaming interest is based in Kentucky?

    Troll & Toad


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  • November 28, 2008 at 12:01 pm

    I think they should turn Gencon into a revolving con that goes to large cities throughout the country. Chicago, Houston, Dallas, LA, Seattle, Atlanta, NY, etc, etc….Thay way, people in those regions can show up without having a huge expense of travel…sure you may not get some folks from some regions because they would have to travel, but meh.

  • November 28, 2008 at 11:32 pm

    The “offer” has been rejected by GenCon and I think the reasons are sound. Unless the group comes out and shows they are a well organized group with a business plan and history of running conventions over many profitable years, I don’t think the courts will go with it either… especially of GenCon’s plan brings them out of the red in just a few months.

    GenCon LLC went into the red because they tried to create other conventions that did not work out. GenCon SoCal, Star Wars Celebration, etc. (Europe and Australia are franchises, I believe, mostly independently operated if I remember correctly.) GenCon Indy is the flagship convention and makes the money. The other attempts failed and they lost money on it all, while Indy still makes the money (thus, their plan to be out of bankruptsy by February.)

    So to say that Peter’s “greed” brought them into the red is only partly correct. They tried to do more than was profitable and paid for it.

    As for a revolving convention, I don’t think that would be good for the convention at all. Part of what makes a convention successful is familiarity and returning business. If a convention would be successful in Houston (for instance), why not set up a yearly con in Houston? Local businesses won’t support a con they don’t know about, and trying to get a one-year rental of a location is probably much more costly (and made years in advance) as the center has to schedule around it for yearly events.

    So, I think GenCon Indy is going to stay in Indy, and will remain with Peter for the time being. But who knows… stranger things have happened. (What do you mean you lost the Star Wars license because you decided to take money from your gaming company and put it into your shoe company??)

  • November 29, 2008 at 4:48 am

    Milwaukeens never supported it like the folks in Indy!? Now that is a crazy thought. GenCon did outstanding in Milwaukee for many, many years. Simple fact is, Peter Atkison hated Milwaukee, which is why it moved out of Wisconsin.

    Yes, I’m sure Indy folks help with GenCon, but please don’t insult GenCons roots – Wisconsin, where D&D started from (that means you, EjoThims).

  • November 29, 2008 at 4:35 pm

    Milwaukee was too small for the size that GenCon had grown to. I don’t believe Peter has strong feelings for or against Milwaukee other than it’s no longer suitable. Indianapolis is a great site for GenCon and I hope it stays there.

  • December 2, 2008 at 5:34 pm

    I don’t remember Milwaukee being too small for Gencon. What I do remember is Gencon changing its date to be at the same time as the state fair, which cut into the available hotel space.

  • March 31, 2009 at 1:30 am

    Now, as for why it’s in Indy over many other locations:

    Hotels. Plain and simple.

    Indianapolis has TONS of hotels, and they are low cost.

    The problem with Cellebration IV was the fact that there was not enough low-cost hotels in the area to accomodate the number of multi-day passes that would’ve paid for the convention center.

    Indy’s convention center is in the middle of a major expansion that should be done and ready to use in two years – just in time for contract renewal.

    Louisville, St. Louis, and other cities that have been reviewed by Gen Con does not have the type of hotel space within walking distance (or 20 min drive) from the convention center. If there is overflow to hotels outside the emediate area, they are 30+ min away. Indianapolis has a ton of hotels within 20 min of the convention center, and pleanty of parking w/in a mile. And the hotel space that is available is ON THE CHEAP.

    Okay, I’m from Indy and tooting my city’s horn. But with NASCAR and Indy Racing League events, Indy’s got the experience of getting a large number of people the hotel space they need and quick travvel to boot.

  • March 31, 2009 at 1:34 am

    Oh forgot something else: Indianapolis does not have the distraction of a nearby theme park.

    So, spouces are more likely to participate in Gen Con spouce-related events. Childeren are more likely to be at the Gen Con kid’s room, or special trips or what not that’s planned. We do have a nice zoo and one of the largest childeren’s museums in the country. But, no theme park to pull participants away from Gen Con.

    GenCon SoCal had Disney land near by that took away some of the gamer money.

    Where’s Kentucky Kingdom again? Isn’t it near Lousiville? Maybe a reason why it’s not been hosted there. Just a thought.

  • March 31, 2009 at 1:38 am

    Oh. I can’t stop commenting. Sorry….

    GenCon has been hosted the same weekend as the Leigonier’s National Convention where an entire hotel (Sheridan) was taken up and un-available for use. The same weekend the IUPUI hotel was hosting a nusrsing convention. And there were two other small conventions that were downtown in nearby hotels.

    To kick that up a notch, Indy Colts had a game that weekend with a packed stadium.

    Indy didn’t have problems with hotel space, and only had a bit of trouble with parking durring the Cotls game. So, yeah. Indy can handle it. And btw: Indiana’s State Fair has overlapped Gen Con at least once w/o much issue. Just so you know.

  • March 31, 2009 at 1:41 am

    How do I know about all those events?
    I deliver pizzas down town. GenCon weekend is one of the best weekends of the year to deliver pizzas. Those guys come here to play, and they love their food – and they know how to tip!

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