Digital Domain Media Group defaults on loan

Published: Sep. 5, 2012 at 3:26 AM EDT
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PORT ST. LUCIE, FL (WFLX) - Digital Domain Media Group, a movie effects company based in Port St. Lucie, has defaulted on a $35 million dollar loan, according to a public filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Linda Bartz, Vice Mayor of Port St. Lucie, said having Digital Domain in the city has been an economic boost.

"They came to this community, they formed some great partnerships, they partner up with the college," she said.  "As with every business, we hope to see it succeed and do well."

Digital Domain now owes $51 million, and may sell a part of the company. CEO John Textor said he believes the amount is low compared to what the company brings to the area.

"We, in my opinion, owe a very small amount of money to the banks versus the value of this enterprise," said Textor. "This is all about a disagreement with a lender. There was no missed payment or financial default. This is about a contractual dispute."

Textor said the company is working with a group of investors led by Tenor Capital Management of New York. When asked if Digital Domain Media Group is looking at the possibility of bankruptcy, he denied it.

"It's not even in my mind as a part of our plans, and what the board of directors or the shareholders decide to do going forward is really up to them," said Textor. "I work at the company as the CEO, and I'm paid to show up and go forward every day, but you did not hear mention of that in our filings. You probably just heard that in the press, and that's not what we publicly disclosed."

Bartz said Port St. Lucie is looking at the city's original contract with Digital Domain to review the partnership, but she considers the studio's chosen location as an opportunity for growth.

"For me, it's always exciting when I see one of their films on TV, to see that double-D come across and know that's in our community," said Bartz.