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Circuit City

Process Overview

Hilco Streambank’s Role

Hilco Streambank was retained to sell Circuit City’s diverse portfolio of intellectual property assets in multiple engagements throughout a two-year period.

Hilco Streambank Canvassed the Marketplace

Circuit City was an iconic brand and e-commerce leader. Founded in 1949 in Richmond, Virginia, Circuit City operated as a retailer of brand-name and private label consumer electronics, personal computers and entertainment software. The brand was a pioneer in the electronics superstore format. At the time it liquidated its inventory, Circuit City was the second largest electronics retailer in the United States, with 567 stores.

Hilco Streambank marketed for sale the Circuit City brand assets, including the CircuitCity.com domain name, a valuable customer database, as well as assets such as firedog, a home theater installation and technical support service, TradingCircuit.com, the company’s proprietary auction platform for managing returned and exchanged merchandise, and 800.com. We also assisted the company in uncovering and monetizing various other types of intellectual property in its coffers, including patents held by a dormant Circuit City subsidiary and internet protocol (IPv4) addresses. Hilco Streambank devised creative methods to maximize value, including separating certain valuable assets, such as 800.com, which were unrelated to Circuit City’s core business, from the remainder of the assets. In marketing the patent portfolio, we reached out to numerous companies with direct and tangential business lines as well as our large network of patent aggregators and litigation funds.

Hilco Streambank Closed the Deals

The company’s brands, customer data and related assets were sold to consumer electronics retailer Systemax for more than $14 million, exceeding the stalking horse bid by more than $7 million. Circuit City’s patents separately sold for more than $6 million, exceeding the stalking horse bid by approximately $5 million. The company’s IPv4 addresses were sold for approximately $1.5 million, and the domain name 800.com fetched $250,000.


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