Fitness financials: Gaiam signs deal with Travel Channel, plus Hibbett Sports, Nautilus

Gaiam signs home video license deal with Travel Channel, Analyst projects high performance for Hibbett Sports, and Nautilus elects new board of directors member.
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Gaiam signs home video license deal with Travel Channel

Gaiam Inc., a distributor of lifestyle media and owner of Spri Products, announced on July 1 that it has signed an exclusive home video license agreement with Travel Channel. Under the two-year agreement, Gaiam will be the exclusive home video distributor for Travel Channel programming, allowing Gaiam to manufacture, distribute and sell DVDs through traditional retail, direct and home shopping channels as well as digitally on the Gaiam website (www.gaiam.com). 

“We are thrilled to begin working with such an innovative and forward-thinking entertainment group such as Travel Channel,” said William S. Sondheim, Gaiam’s president of entertainment and worldwide distribution, in a statement. “We're confident that our expertise and established distribution relationships will continue to grow Travel Channel's well established presence in the home entertainment market.”

Analyst projects high performance for Hibbett Sports

Zacks Equity Research said in a July 6 statement the firm was maintaining its “outperform” recommendation on Hibbett Sports (Nasdaq: HIBB), noting it anticipates the company will “perform well above the market” due to its “sharp focus towards mid-sized and smaller markets and strategic mix of branded as well as localized merchandise provide an edge over its rivals.”

Zacks analysts added, “The company easily surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in the first quarter of fiscal 2011 and boosted its guidance. Hibbett's management is also committed towards expanding the store network in fiscal 2011.”

In addition the firm said Hibbett Sports’ “debt-free balance sheet and full availability under credit facilities bode well for future operating performance. Our target price of $29.00 reflects our positive view on Hibbett Sports.”

Nautilus elects new board of directors member

Fitness company Nautilus, Inc. (NYSE:NLS) today announced M. Carl Johnson III has been elected to its board of directors.

“We are very pleased to have Carl join the Nautilus Inc. board of directors,” said Edward Bramson, chairman and CEO of Nautilus, in a statement. “His strong background in corporate expansion strategy and marketing will provide additional expertise as we leverage our restructured platform in the retail and direct channels with current and expanding product lines.”

Johnson joined Campbell Soup Company in April 2001, as senior vice president and chief strategy officer. He has direct responsibility for corporate strategy, research & development, quality, corporate marketing services, licensing, and e-Business.

Johnson joined Campbell from Kraft Foods, where he ran three business divisions, including the $2.5 billion New Meals Division, which achieved record-high operating income growth.

“I look forward to working with Nautilus’ experienced board,” said Mr. Johnson. “The Company’s premium fitness brands in both retail and direct channels are well positioned to offer long-term growth opportunities by helping people achieve a fit and healthy lifestyle.”

--Compiled by Marcus Woolf

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