Former Redbox chef Galen Smith quits Chicken Soup for the Soul

Galen Smith, CEO of Redbox

Thomas K. Arnold

Galen Smith, the former CEO of Redbox who arranged the sale of his company to Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment last August, is stepping down as executive vice president of Chicken Soup, effective January 2.

Smith took over as CEO of Redbox in September 2016 and subsequently led the business through a digital transformation, with digital movie sales and rentals and free live TV, both on-demand and ad-supported. . He also revamped the company’s old record rental kiosks as a marketing tool to further ease consumers’ transition from physical to digital.

“We have this amazing business with a very loyal following who love movies,” Smith said. Media Play News in July 2021. “They still love renting movies from our kiosks, but as we know consumers are going digital, and we want to create an opportunity for them to make it easier for them by having all of those opportunities in one place – Free-to-air, TVOD and on-demand TV – and as part of this transition we’re going through, we’ll also be adding subscription channels.

In October 2021, Smith took Redbox public through a merger with Seaport Global Acquisition Corp., a publicly traded special purpose acquisition company.

But when the pandemic hit, a lack of fresh new movies hampered Redbox’s growth plans and sent the company’s stock price plummeting, ultimately leading to its sale to Chicken Soup last August.

In a December 9 8-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Chicken Soup for the Soul, “On December 5, 2022, Galen Smith, who joined Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment Inc. as Executive Vice President following our acquisition of Redbox Entertainment Inc., has notified our Board of Directors that he will be stepping down from this position effective January 2, 2023 to pursue other leadership opportunities. Mr. Smith served as Chief Executive Officer of Redbox from 2016 until our acquisition of Redbox in August 2022. From 2013 to 2016, he served as Chief Financial Officer of Outerwall, the predecessor company to Redbox and a leading provider of automated retail solutions, including Redbox. , Coinstar and ecoATM. Mr. Smith was instrumental in transforming Redbox into an industry-leading company with a talented management and operations team and helped lay the foundation for our combined company’s continued journey to become the premier destination entertainment for value-conscious consumers. Mr. Smith has helped lead our integration of Redbox since acquisition and ensured a clear path was established to better serve our consumers. Until January 2, 2023, Mr. Smith will work closely with our management and staff to ensure a smooth transition of his responsibilities. Mr. Smith’s duties will be assumed by our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, William J. Rouhana Jr. The terms of Mr. Smith’s departure will be governed by his existing employment agreement with our company.

Redbox reported a net loss of $9.5 million on revenue of $31.6 million from DVD and Blu-ray Disc rentals, as well as digital movie rentals and sales, in the third quarter (ended September 30). The revenue, which represented 34% of Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment’s $72.4 million total revenue, represents the partial period of the quarter after CSSE officially completed its acquisition of Redbox for $375 million on August 11.

The company operates approximately 34,000 kiosks nationwide and plans to add 1,000 kiosks at a select national retailer in 2023. Record rental revenue exceeded $24.8 million.

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