dwaDreamworks Animation Skg Inc (NASDAQ:DWA) announced that Michael Francis, the Company’s Chief Global Brand Officer, will step down from his full-time duties at the Company in December.  The Company expects to retain Mr. Francis’ services as an external consultant.

DWA also announced that Jim Fielding, Head of Global Consumer Products, will oversee its licensing and franchise management businesses going forward and report directly to DWA President Ann Daly.

In a joint statement, CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg and Ms. Daly said: “We are grateful to Michael for his tireless work over the past three years and hope to continue benefitting from his counsel as we continue to build and leverage our brand within each of our business lines.  Michael built a strong internal organization, led by Jim Fielding and others, that will enable us to drive growth in these keys areas in the future.  We wish Michael all the best in what will be an exciting new chapter in his career.”

Since 2013, Mr. Francis has overseen the Company’s branding, licensing, consumer products and franchise management efforts, and going forward he plans to work closely with DWA on its ongoing efforts to enhance the value of DreamWorks Animation as a global family entertainment brand.  He will also serve as a board member for AwesomenessTV.

“I’m incredibly grateful to Jeffrey, Ann and the entire team at DreamWorks Animation for entrusting me with one of the world’s most iconic brands.  I’ve determined that this is the right move for me both personally and professionally. I’m excited to resume my own business while also planning to continue working with the talented DWA team to help ensure the ascendancy of the brand.”

Before joining DreamWorks Animation in 2013, Mr. Francis was the Founder of Farview Associates, LLC, a global brand agency representing a diverse slate of retail, design and celebrity partners. Previously, he was President of J.C. Penney, where he oversaw marketing, merchandising, design and global sourcing.  Mr. Francis spent more than 26 years with the Target Corporation, ultimately serving as Global Chief Marketing Officer. (Original Source)

Shares of Dreamworks Animation closed today at $19.75, up $0.49 or 2.54%. DWA has a 1-year high of $29.75 and a 1-year low of $17.82. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $22.98 and its 200-day moving average is $24.20.

On the ratings front, Dreamworks Animation has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report released yesterday, Topeka analyst David Miller upgraded DWA to Hold, with a price target of $18, which represents a potential downside of 8.9% from where the stock is currently trading. Separately, on August 24, B. Riley’s Eric Wold upgraded the stock to Buy and has a price target of $26.

According to TipRanks.com, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, David Miller and Eric Wold have a total average return of 13.4% and -1.8% respectively. Miller has a success rate of 64.2% and is ranked #139 out of 3730 analysts, while Wold has a success rate of 47.8% and is ranked #2879.

Overall, 3 research analysts have rated the stock with a Sell rating, one research analyst has assigned a Hold rating and 3 research analysts have given a Buy rating to the stock. When considering if perhaps the stock is under or overvalued, the average price target is $19.25 which is -2.5% under where the stock opened today.

Dreamworks Animation SKG Inc creates and exploits family entertainment, including animated feature films, television series and specials, live entertainment properties and related consumer products.