TCR_Public/961127.MBX




InterNet Bankruptcy Library - News for November 27, 1996






Bankruptcy News For November 27,
1996



  1. NASDAQ to De-List Best Products Stock

  2. Founder Buys Company: Software Etc., Babbage's Stores Back in Business for
    Holiday Season

  3. Sizzler International reports 2 cents second quarter loss on lower revenues

  4. Reddi Brake Supply corrects and replaces previous announcement

  5. RATING NEWS: MIAMI OFFICIALS DECLARE STATE OF `FINANCIAL
    EMERGENCY' -- Baa RATING REMAINS UNDER REVIEW, MOODY'S
    REPORTS

  6. L.A. Gear announces fourth quarter restructuring charge and executive
    reorganization




NASDAQ to De-List Best Products Stock


RICHMOND, Va.--Nov. 27, 1996--Best Products Co., Inc. (NASDAQ:BESTQ)
today said that The Nasdaq Stock Market has said it will de-list Best Products' stock
effective with the opening of business, Friday, Nov. 29, 1996. The action comes as a
result of the facts and circumstances of the company's bankruptcy proceeding.


Best Products said it will not appeal Nasdaq's decision.


Best Products, which commenced a Chapter 11 case under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code
September 24, sold substantially all its store- related assets to an investment group
November 19. Going-out-of- business sales are underway at the company's 169 stores
and 11 Best Jewelry stores. Eighty-one stores are expected to close by the end of the
year; the remainder will close during February.


CONTACT: Best Products Co., Inc., Richmond Nora Crouch, 804/261-2179
(Financial Information) or Ross Richardson, 804/261-2157 (Media)




Founder Buys Company: Software Etc., Babbage's Stores Back in Business for
Holiday Season


DALLAS, TX - Nov. 27, 1996 - A group of investors led by Leonard Riggio,
chairman and founder of Barnes & Noble, Inc., has purchased the assets of NeoStar
Retail Group
.


NeoStar recently filed for bankruptcy after an unsuccessful attempt to reorganize in
Chapter 11. The assets purchased include the company headquarters facilities,
inventory, and approximately 460 stores operated under the trade names of Software
Etc. and Babbage's. The new entity will be called Babbage's, Etc. and will be based
in Dallas, Texas.


"Going into this process, we had two objectives in mind," said Leonard Riggio, who
was the principal owner and chairman of Software Etc. before it merged with
Babbage's in 1994. "The first was to save the jobs of 3,000 good people; the second
was to save a company with a proud and accomplished history.


"I believe that the software business, despite its title-driven sales fluctuations,
remains a very viable retail concept, especially in the major American shopping
malls," Riggio continued. "Shortages in supplies of hot new titles, especially video
games, are just one indicator of what we believe will be a promising future."


All 460 stores will be open and well-stocked and staffed for the holiday season.
Plans call for the immediate replenishment of depleted store inventories and
purchases of important seasonal merchandise are expected to arrive beginning in the
first week of December. The company anticipates obtaining the full cooperation of
suppliers and believes it will adequately satisfy the needs of its many loyal
customers.


Riggio will serve as chairman of Babbage's, Etc. R. Richard (Dick) Fontaine,
formerly the chief executive officer of Software Etc. during its successful expansion
in the late 80s and early 90s, will return as chief executive officer of the new
company. Dan DeMatteo will be president and chief operating officer.


"For me, this is a great opportunity" said Fontaine. "I am coming back to a business I
know and love - this time as an owner, as well as chief executive. I'll be working
within an industry I believe has great upside potential.


"I plan to revitalize the company in every respect, and to provide opportunities for
professional growth to the hundreds of management people who have been the
backbone of the company," Fontaine stated. Most recently, Fontaine served as
president of Barnes & Noble Mall Group, and he has been an executive with Ingram
Video and Michaels Stores Inc.


Although the company is presently planning to operate 460 of the stores whose leases
were purchased in the bankruptcy proceedings, many of the 200 stores which were not
purchased may be included, subject to discussions with landlords.


The new company, Babbage's, Etc., will operate in the office building and warehouse
formerly occupied by NeoStar in Dallas. The 150 headquarters and distribution center
employees formerly employed by NeoStar will be offered jobs with the new
company, Fontaine said.


SOURCE Software Etc.; Babbage's  /CONTACT: Mary Li1ja of Lilja, Ink. for
Software Etc. and Babbage's, 817-424-2186/




Sizzler International reports 2 cents second quarter loss on lower revenues


LOS ANGELES, CA --Nov. 27, 1996--Sizzler International Inc. (NYSE:SZ)
Wednesday announced a 2 cents loss on lower revenues for the quarter ending Oct.
13, 1996.


For the 12 weeks ended Oct. 13, 1996, the Company reported

revenues of $68,033,000 compared with revenues of $102,220,000 for the same
period last year. Net loss for the quarter was $622,000, or 2 cents per share, as
compared with a net income of $168,000,000, or 1 cent per share, for the same period
last year.


For the 24 weeks ending Oct. 13, 1996, revenues were $152,469,000 versus
$207,721,000 for the same period last year. The first two quarters of this year have
resulted in a net loss of $128,000, or 0 cents per share, as compared with a net profit
of $604,000, or 2 cents per share, for the same period a year ago.


Sizzler is in the midst of a financial reorganization under protection of a Chapter 11
filing initiated by the Company on June 2, 1996.


Kevin Perkins, Sizzler International president and chief executive officer said, "We
expect to file a reorganization plan before year-end and look forward to emerging
from the Chapter 11 process by April 30, 1997, the end of the current fiscal year. As
the reorganization plan continues to unfold, all restaurants will continue to be closely
monitored and are subject to review."


Sizzler International currently operates or licenses 438 Sizzler restaurants worldwide.
In addition, the Company operates 93 Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) restaurants and
one The Italian Oven restaurant in Queensland, Australia.


 


                       SIZZLER INTERNATIONAL INC.
                        (Debtors-in-Possession)
                           SUMMARY OF RESULTS
                    CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME
                              (UNAUDITED)
              (Dollars in thousands, except per share data)

                                           For the Twelve
                                           Weeks Ended
                                              Oct. 13,    Oct.
                                              15,
                                               1996       
                                               1995

        Systemwide sales                        $ 151,783    $
        203,927

        Revenues                                $  68,033    $
        102,220

        Net income                              $    (622)   $
            168

        Net income per common share             $   (0.02)   $
           0.01

        Common and common equivalent shares    29,061,000  
        27,803,000

        Common shares, assuming full dilution  29,061,000  
        27,820,000

                                        For the Twenty-Four
                                        Weeks Ended
                                              Oct. 13,    Oct.
                                              15,
                                               1996       
                                               1995

        Systemwide sales                        $ 333,049    $
        421,846

        Revenues                                $ 152,469    $
        207,721

        Net income                              $    (128)   $
            604

        Net income per common share             $    --      $
           0.02

        Common and common equivalent shares    28,955,000  
        27,800,000

        Common share, assuming full dilution   28,955,000  
        27,812,000

        


CONTACT: Sizzler International Inc. Christopher R. Thomas, 310/827-2300 or
Financial Relations Board: Tim Kent and Rebecca Bergman General Information,
310/442-0599 Steven Seiler Media Contact, 310/442-0599 Moira Conlon Analyst
Contact, 310/442-0599




Reddi Brake Supply corrects and replaces previous announcement


      


VENTURA, Calif.--Nov. 27, 1996--Announces new directors; discusses progress on

informal reorganization Reddi Brake Supply Corp. (NASDAQ: REDI) today
announced that it filed its 10-Q Report for the three months ended Sept. 30, 1996, on
Nov. 19.


For the three months the company reported revenues of $16,714,848 with a net loss of
$2,123,345 or $.10 per share on 22,069,845 shares outstanding. This compares to
first quarter 1995 revenues of $15,330,341 with a net loss of $103,092 or $.01 on
16,528,710 shares outstanding.


The company attributed the loss to a lower gross margin (36 percent vs. 42 percent)
and higher operating and corporate expenses incurred in anticipation of unrealized
sales expansion. The company said that both factors are being addressed in its
informal plan of reorganization as announced on Nov. 15.


The company also announced that at a meeting of its board of directors on Nov. 22,
Thomas J. Toole and Marshall Green were elected as directors of the company. Toole
is managing partner of a national executive search firm specializing in the automobile
aftermarket industry. Green also has a background in the automobile aftermarket
industry and serves as an elected delegate to the current White House Conference on
Small Business.


The company reported that one warehouse in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., was closed in
October, bringing the total number of warehouses to 84.


The Company reported that same-warehouse sales for the month of October declined
1.6 percent from the same period a year earlier. Richard J. McGorrian, Reddi Brake's
president and chief executive officer, attributed the decline to a shortage of fast
moving inventory items in the 84 warehouse system. As a remedy, the company
reported that it was working with its Creditors' Committee to develop an interim
arrangement to get new fast moving inventory into the warehouses while the details of
the informal plan of reorganization announced Nov. 15 are being developed. The
company anticipates that the plan will be completed in December.


Reddi Brake Supply Corp. operates 84 Reddi Brake outlets in 26 states, providing
two-step distribution of brake systems, chassis components and other auto
undercarriage parts to professional installers.


                                  First Quarter Ended
                                  September 30
                                       1996             1995
        Revenues                       $16,714,848      
        $15,330,341 Net Income (Loss)             
        $(2,123,345)      $  (103,092) Net Income (Loss) Per
        Share    $      (.10)      $      (.01) Weighted
        Average Number of
         Shares Outstanding             22,069,845       
         16,528,710

CONTACT: Martin E. Janis & Co. Bev Jedynak, 312/943-1100 or Reddi Brake
Supply Corp. Richard J. McGorrian, 805/644-8355 ext. 125 or Sanford T. Waddell,
805/644-8355 ext. 205





RATING NEWS: MIAMI OFFICIALS DECLARE STATE OF `FINANCIAL
EMERGENCY' -- Baa RATING REMAINS UNDER REVIEW, MOODY'S
REPORTS


NEW YORK, NY--Nov. 27, 1996--On Tuesday, Nov. 26, the mayor of the city of
Miami notified the governor that the city is in a state of "Financial Emergency,"
thereby making it possible for the state to impose strong oversight over the city's
financial operations.


This step underscores both the magnitude of the city's financial difficulties and the
severe political challenges the city faces in addressing them. These concerns led
Moody's to revise the rating on the city's General Obligation Bonds to Baa from A, on
Oct. 18, 1996.


According to press reports, the mayor raised the possibility of declaring bankruptcy
under Chapter 9 in his discussions with the governor. Under Florida statues, a locality
may not file for bankruptcy without prior approval of the governor.


Presently, Moody's has no knowledge of any plans by officials to file for bankruptcy
and the mayor has suggested that such action would be premature. Another option
discussed by the mayor and governor was the creation of a financial emergencies
board with strong powers over city financial operations.


The Baa rating remains under review pending further development of the city's plans
to address its fiscal crisis. An approaching milestone is the Dec. 12 City Commission
meeting to review the proposed recovery plan. Key provisions of the plan include
major concessions from the city's four unions and a significant increase in the garbage
fee, either of which may be politically difficult to achieve.


Moody's will continue to communicate with city and state officials and report on
developments as they occur.


CONTACT: Moody's Investors Service, New York John Incorvaia, VP Linda
Lipnick, VP/Senior Credit Officer Bradley Gewehr, VP/Assistant Director Barbara
Flickinger, VP/Assistant Director, State Ratings Group, Journalists: 212/553-1925
Subscribers: 212/553-1653 All other inquiries: 212/553-1650




L.A. Gear announces fourth quarter restructuring charge and executive reorganization


SANTA MONICA, Calif.--Nov. 26, 1996--L.A. Gear Inc. (NYSE:LA) Tuesday
announced that, in light of continuing operating losses, the company has adopted a
cost-reduction plan aimed at bringing the company's operating expenses in line with
its anticipated sales base.


This plan primarily consists of the following key elements:


-- an approximately 55 percent reduction in the company's full-time domestic
workforce (from approximately 310 to 140 employees);


-- reduction of corporate overhead through space consolidation at the company's Santa
Monica headquarters and Ontario, Calif., distribution center; and


-- a consolidation and restructuring of the company's European operations, including,
where appropriate, servicing the company's European customers through independent
distributors, rather than a direct subsidiary sales force.


The company anticipates that its fourth quarter operating results will be adversely
affected by between $28 million and $33 million of restructuring charges in
connection with the implementation of this plan. It is anticipated that approximately
$17 million to $20 million of the estimated restructuring charge will be of a non-cash
nature, primarily related to asset write-downs and goodwill write-offs associated
with certain of the company's European subsidiaries.


The domestic workforce reductions will occur in the first quarter of fiscal 1997, and
substantially all of the estimated cash costs associated with the plan will be incurred
over the next six to 12 months. As previously disclosed, the company anticipates a
loss for the fourth quarter and year ended Nov. 30, 1996.


The company also announced that William L. Benford, president and chief operating
officer, will join Shamrock Capital Advisors Inc. in early February 1997. Effective
immediately, Bruce MacGregor will assume Benford's duties on an interim basis.


MacGregor previously served as vice president-marketing at Avia and co-founder,
president and chief executive officer of Deja Shoe, before joining the company in
August 1996 as senior vice president- product marketing. Prior to his departure,
Benford will assist in the transition, and be responsible for the implementation of
certain key elements of the company's restructuring plan. Benford will continue to
serve on the company's board of directors.


In addition, the company announced that Victor J. Trippetti has been elevated to the
position of senior vice president and chief financial officer. Trippetti joined the
company in October 1989, and has served as vice president and treasurer since July
1992.


Stanley P. Gold, chairman of the board, said, "We have endeavored to streamline the
organization, while maintaining the company's focus on its heritage as a premier
designer and marketer of women's and children's footwear.


"By consistently reinforcing the ultimate importance of retailer and consumer
satisfaction in every element of our sales, marketing and product design and
development programs, we will seek to enhance brand image, generate increased
sales velocity with existing customers, attract new customers and increase penetration
into international markets.


"It is only by taking bold measures to position the company to compete effectively in
an intensely competitive and consolidating branded athletic footwear industry that we
can continue to strive toward a return to profitability and enhanced shareholder
value."


The matters discussed in this news release include "forward- looking statements"
within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.


Such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and
other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the
company to be materially different from any future results, performance or
achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements.


Such factors include, among others, the company's ability to reduce expenses, the
effect of the restructuring and reorganization on the company's sales and marketing
efforts, changing market conditions, retailer and consumer acceptance of new products
and continuing product demand, the impact of competitive products and pricing,
changing worldwide economic and business conditions, competition, brand
awareness, the existence or absence of adverse publicity; availability, terms and
deployment of capital and the availability of and ability to retain qualified personnel.


L.A. Gear designs, develops and markets a broad range of quality athletic and
lifestyle footwear for adults and children.


CONTACT: L.A. Gear Inc., Santa Monica Victor J. Trippetti, 310/581-7146