Midway’s Mystery Man Steps Into the Light

As the Midway bankruptcy works it way through the court system, there has been more than a passing interest in Mark Thomas, the unknown who purchased the financially-troubled publisher from media mogul Sumner Redstone for a mere $100,000 last November. In addition to Midway, Thomas also acquired $70 million of Midway debt in the deal.

Since Midway declared itself bankrupt on February 12th, there have been assertions by some creditors that questionable dealings occurred in relation to the Mortal Kombat publisher’s sale and subsequent bankruptcy proceedings. As GamePolitics reported last month, a court document alleged that, under certain conditions, Thomas stood to make a 30,000% return on his original investment.

And, earlier this week, GamePolitics broke the news that Sumner Redstone and his daughter Shari, who formerly served as Midway’s chairperson, were subpoenaed for depositions which appear to be directed in part at probing their relationship with Thomas.

Now, Mark Thomas is fighting back.

In a court document filed yesteday, Thomas declares – under penalty of perjury – that he never met or spoke to either of the Redstones until he became aware of the opportunity to purchase Midway on November 14th, 2008. The deal closed two weeks later. Thomas also writes that he did not speak with them during the negotiations to buy Midway and hasn’t spoken to them since.

Thomas declares that he was initially informed by one of Redstone’s attorneys that Midway might be available. Thomas, a 52-year-old attorney, lives in Massachusetts, and writes that his personal net worth is in excess of $10 million and that he has no debt.

Thomas goes as far as to attach a resume, which lists jobs as far back as 1980. Currently he serves as Managing Director of Estabrook Partners, LLC, a private equity firm which he founded. Prior to that, his most recent position was with another private equity firm, Georgetown Partners, LLC in which Thomas held a 48% ownership position.

DOCUMENT DUMP: Get the Mark Thomas declaration here.

UPDATE: The Chicago Tribune has additional coverage on the Mark Thomas revelations.

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  1. 0
    Parallax Abstraction says:

    There’s no question this deal is all kinds of shady but the important thing to keep in mind that a lot of stories neglect to mention is that he didn’t buy Midway for just $100K.  He bought it for $100K and almost $200M in debt.  He pay have only paid $100K in cash but that debt does factor into the equation.  Granted, since he will probably get a $30M bailout while screwing over the actual workers and not having his holding company be responsible for that debt, he still came out ahead.  But the reason Sumner Redstone dumped Midway for so cheap was to divest himself of the debt.

    Parallax Abstraction
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

  2. 0
    Kris says:

    It’s still really suspicious.  But man, that’s a lot of work to put into creating some fake guy or something.  As bizarre and clearly fishy as this sounds, the high profile nature seems to make it seem like it has to be real and totally legitimate.  Because they couldn’t be that stupid, right?  I guess it could be "legitimate," and they made a deal with this guy to split some serious profits later.

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