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InterNet Bankruptcy Library - News for March 20, 1997







Bankruptcy News For March 20, 1997




        
  1. Today's Man Exceeds Turnaround Plan by
            38% With a $7.6 Million EBITDA in Fiscal 1996

  2.     
  3. Celotex Reorganization Plan Confirmed

  4.     
  5. Toy Biz, Inc. Announces Authorization
            to Repurchase up to 3 Million Shares of Common Stock

  6.     
  7. Brooke reaches comprehensive settlement
            of tobacco litigation






Today's Man Exceeds Turnaround Plan by
38% With a $7.6 Million EBITDA in Fiscal 1996



MOORESTOWN, N.J., March 20, 1997 - href="chap11.todays.html">Today's Man, Inc. (Nasdaq: TMANQ),
operating under the protection of Chapter 11 of the U.S.
Bankruptcy Code as Debtor-In-Possession, today announced sales
and earnings for the twelve months and fourth quarter ended
February 1, 1997. Today's Man operated 25 superstores as of
February 1, 1997, a 52 week fiscal year, and 35 superstores and
one outlet store as of February 3, 1996, a 53 week fiscal year.



After closing 10 of 35 superstores in 1996, sales for the
twelve months ended February 1, 1997 were $204.0 million,
compared with sales of $263.3 million for the twelve months last
year. Gross profit grew to 34.1% in fiscal 1996 versus 31.3% in
fiscal 1995 and income from operations increased to $3.5 million
versus a loss of $37.7 million. The Company's EBITDA or earnings
before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, which
represents the cash generated from operations, was $7.6 million
for the year ended February 1, 1997 compared to a negative EBITDA
of $14.3 million in fiscal 1995. The reorganization and
restructuring charges have been excluded from the calculation of
EBITDA. After reorganization and restructuring charges of $8.8
million and $19.3 million, for fiscal 1996 and 1995,
respectively, the net loss was $5.8 million versus $35.7 million
or $(0.54) per share versus $(3.29) per share. Weighted average
shares outstanding for each fiscal year were 10,861,005 and
10,846,971 respectively.



Sales for the thirteen week fourth quarter of fiscal 1996 were
$67.7 million, compared with sales of $82.7 million for the
fourteen week fourth quarter last year. Gross profit for the
fourth quarter was 35.5% compared to 24.9% in the year ago
quarter. Income from operations increased $38.6 million from a
loss of $32.5 million to $6.1 million. The loss for the quarter
was $64,900 or $0.01 per share, compared with net loss of
$30,690,700, or $2.83 per share, for the same period a year ago.
The loss for the quarter included $5,746,700 or $0.53 per share
in net reorganization items. During the quarter ended February 3,
1996 the Company recorded restructuring charges of $19,248,700 or
$1.77 per share. Weighted average shares outstanding for the
fourth quarters were 10,861,005.



"We continue to be pleased with the customers' reactions
to our product offering as evidenced by the second consecutive
quarterly comparable store sales increase. The success of our
refined merchandising strategy is evidenced by the strong gross
profit and the impact of our operational adjustments is reflected
in the income from operations," said David Feld, Chairman of
the Board and Chief Executive Officer. "With a 1997 business
plan projecting an even higher EBITDA than fiscal 1996 we believe
that we have laid a strong foundation for a successful emergence
from Chapter 11."



Today's Man, Inc. currently operates 25 mens superstores in
the New York, Philadelphia, and Washington markets. It offers a
wide selection of tailored clothing, furnishings, sportswear and
shoes at everyday low prices.



Safe Harbor Statement under Private Securities Litigation
Reform Act of 1995:



Certain statements in this press release which are not
historical facts, including, without limitation, statements as to
the Company's planned results for 1997 or as to management's
beliefs, expectations and opinions, are forward-looking
statements that involve risks and uncertainties and are subject
to change at any time. Certain factors, including, without
limitation the risk that the assumptions upon which the
forward-looking statements are based ultimately may prove to be
incorrect, risks associated with the Company's Chapter 11
petition, and other risks detailed from time to time in the
Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission,
including its Annual Report on Form 10-K, can cause actual
results and developments to be materially different from those
expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements.



Today's Man, Inc.

CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS

OF OPERATIONS



                               FOR          FOR   
                                        FOR       
                                  FOR
                                 THIRTEEN     
                                 FOURTEEN       
                                 FIFTY-TWO
        FIFTY-THREE


                                WEEKS ENDED  
                                WEEKS ENDED    
                                WEEKS ENDED
        WEEKS ENDED


                               FEB. 1, 1997  FEB.

                               3, 1996  FEB. 1,
                               1997
        FEB. 3, 1996


            Net sales           $67,730,000  
            $82,747,800   $204,042,400
        $263,256,000


            Cost of goods sold   43,678,600   
            62,135,700    134,524,200
        180,928,200


             Gross profit        24,051,400   
             20,612,100     69,518,200
        82,327,800


        Selling, general and

         administrative
             expenses            17,904,400   
             33,820,500     65,982,500
        100,753,000


         Restructuring

              charges                    --   
              19,248,700
        --    19,248,700


         Income (loss) from

              operations          6,147,000  
              (32,457,100)     3,535,700
        (37,673,900)


         Reorganization items,

              net                 5,746,700       
                  --      8,847,700
        --


        Interest expense and

             other income, net      465,200    
             1,746,000        499,300
        4,210,800


        Loss before income

             tax benefit            (64,900)
             (34,203,100)    (5,811,300)
        (41,884,700)


            Income tax benefit           --   
            (3,512,400)
        --    (6,201,000)


            Net loss               
            $(64,900)$(30,690,700)   $(5,811,300)
        $(35,683,700)


             Net loss per share      $(0.01)      
             $(2.83)        $(0.54)
        $(3.29)


        Weighted average

             shares outstanding  10,861,005   
             10,861,005     10,861,005
        10,846,971


SOURCE Today's Man, Inc.3/20/97 /CONTACT: Frank E. Johnson,
Vice President and C.F.O., 609-722-6380, or David Feld, Chairman
of the Board & C.E.O., 609-722-6340, both of Today's Man; or
Michael Kempner, mkempnermww.com, or Carreen Winters,
cwintersmww.com, Public Relations, of MWW/Strategic
Communications, Inc., 201-507- 9500/






Celotex Reorganization Plan Confirmed



TAMPA, Fla., March 20, 1997 - The Celotex Corporation
announced today its reorganization plan has been confirmed and is
expected to be effective May 30, 1997. This announcement came as
a result of the issuance of an order by the Honorable Ralph W.
Nimmons, Jr. of the United States District Court for the Middle
District of Florida confirming the reorganization plan Celotex
proposed to its creditors. The Plan was accepted overwhelmingly
by all creditor groups.



The confirmation of the Plan had been previously approved
December 6, 1996 by the Honorable Thomas E. Baynes, Jr., the
bankruptcy judge who presided over the Celotex reorganization
case. Celotex and its subsidiary, Carey Canada Inc., have
operated under protection of the Bankruptcy Court since October
12, 1990. The Chapter 11 cases of Celotex and Carey Canada were
among the largest bankruptcy cases in history.



"This is a great day for our company, customers,
employees, and suppliers who have worked so hard with and for us
since our Chapter 11 filing in late 1990," said Dennis M.
Ross, Celotex' president and chief executive. "Celotex is a
much stronger company today than it was six years ago. We have
significantly enhanced our rich and strong heritage, achieving
record sales and profits during the last six years. Moreover,
Celotex can look forward to the future without the threat of any
asbestos claims or litigation," said Ross.



Freedom From Asbestos-Related Claims and Litigation Celotex is
fully protected from asbestos-related claims and litigation by a
bankruptcy discharge and release of all asbestos- related claims,
as well as a series of special injunctions. The special
injunctions include the Discharge Injunction, the Supplemental
Injunction, the Third Party Injunction and the Veil Piercing
Settlement Agreement Injunction, all of which are implemented
through the Plan. These injunctions prohibit legal action against
Celotex and other parties based upon any present or future
asbestos-related claim or demand.



The injunctions were issued by the District Court through
confirmation of the Plan pursuant to Section 524(g) of the
Bankruptcy Code. Congress enacted Section 524(g) in 1994 to grant
the District Court the unique power to enter the special
injunctions. Section 524(g) was enacted, in part, in response to
problems arising in certain other asbestos-related bankruptcies
where lingering uncertainty existed in the financial community as
to whether those companies were fully protected from future
asbestos- related claims. Among other problems, these concerns
caused the financial markets to discount the value of securities
of those companies and make access to these markets more
expensive. This, in turn, diminished the value of the assets
available to pay holders of asbestos-related claims against those
companies.



By obtaining confirmation of the Plan and satisfying the
stringent requirements of Section 524(g), Celotex has eliminated
its asbestos-related liability, including liability for future
asbestos claims. Investors, lenders, suppliers, employees and
others are assured Celotex has indeed emerged from Chapter 11
free of all present and future asbestos-related liabilities.
Asbestos-related claims and demands against Celotex may now only
be asserted against a trust established pursuant to the Plan.



Trust Established A principal feature of the Plan is the
establishment of a Trust that will assume all asbestos-related
liabilities and obligations of Celotex. All present and future
asbestos claims will be resolved by the Trust in accordance with
court approved procedures. As a result, the company will operate
its business permanently free of any asbestos-related claims and
litigation.



The Trust will be administered and operated by five
independent trustees: Frank Andrews, John H. Laeri, Jr., Frances
E. McGovern, Sharon M. Meadows and James W. Stevens. Laeri,
Stevens and Meadows have extensive investment banking backgrounds
with broad corporate governance experience. Andrews and McGovern
have legal backgrounds with significant experience in mass tort
cases.



The Trust will be funded with assets valued at between $1.4
billion and $2.5 billion. However, the asbestos-related
liabilities to be assumed by the Trust have been estimated to be
as high as $17 billion. Accordingly, although the full value of
Celotex in the form of 100 percent of its stock is being
contributed to the Trust, asbestos-related claims cannot be paid
in full. The Trust, however, will operate to ensure the limited
assets held by the Trust are distributed efficiently and
equitably among present and future asbestos claimants.



Under the Plan, recoveries for all current and future
asbestos- related creditors are to be expeditious and equitable.
"The Trust must periodically assess the value of its assets
and the value of present and expected asbestos claims and make
appropriate adjustments in the percentage of claim values paid to
ensure sufficient assets are and will be available to make
similar payments to asbestos claimants in the future," Ross
said. Unlike the Trust established under the Plan, trusts
established in some other asbestos-related cases attempted to pay
the full value of all asbestos claims, which resulted in
inadequate assets to pay 100 percent of all asbestos claims. The
Plan, however, recognizes the projected value of asbestos claims
is greater than the Trust's total available assets. Thus,
asbestos claimants will only receive a percentage of the value of
their claim, and the percentage is subject to adjustment from
time to time to ensure that all claimants receive substantially
the same treatment.



The Bankruptcy Court has also appointed a permanent legal
representative to protect the interests of future asbestos
claimants. Throughout Celotex' bankruptcy, the legal
representative has taken an extremely active role in representing
the interests of future asbestos claimants. The Plan provides for
the legal representative to continue his efforts to ensure that
future asbestos claims are treated by the Trust in substantially
the same manner as current asbestos claims. Attorney David S.
Shrager is the Plan's permanent legal representative. "To
address the anticipated future claims, the Trust must exist well
into the next century and resolve claims of future claimants in
substantially the same manner as those of today. The permanent
legal representative will play a critical role in this
process," Ross said.



The Trust will own 100 per cent of the stock of Celotex as
well as its affiliates: Jim Walter Corporation (JWC), Center for
Applied Engineering, Inc. (CAE), Jim Walter International
Corporation (JWIC) and Carey Canada. However, only Celotex will
continue as an operating entity.



Celotex will acquire many of the operating assets and employ
most of the personnel of JWC, CAE and JWIC. The remaining assets
of those affiliates and Carey Canada will be liquidated by the
Trust in an orderly fashion. The Trust will also own
approximately 20 percent of the common stock of Walter
Industries, Inc. At no time since 1988 has Celotex had any
corporate relationship with Walter Industries.



Beneficial Tax Attributes "Since Celotex' stock is one of
the Trust's principal assets, Celotex and the Trust must
logically work together to achieve maximum return from Celotex'
business. There are unique tax benefits and other aspects of the
Plan which foster a partnership- type relationship with the
Trust," said Ross. "As a result of the confirmation of
the Plan, we expect substantial income tax benefits will become
available to the company over the next several years," said
Ross. "Full maximization of those tax benefits has a value
estimated at over $200 million. However, the Trust must retain a
majority interest in Celotex over a multiple year period for the
company to qualify for full receipt of these tax benefits. The
more Celotex' profits continue to grow, the sooner the tax
benefits can be realized. Accordingly, it is in the Trust's best
interests to aggressively support the company's growth,"
Ross said.



Celotex' Business and Management Continue Under the Plan, the
existing business of Celotex will continue with the current
management team: Ross, president and chief executive officer;
Timothy M. Pariso, executive vice president and chief operating
officer; John P. Borreca, senior vice president, treasurer and
chief financial officer; George N. Wood, vice president, general
counsel, and secretary; A.A. (Lance) Campbell, senior vice
president-sales and marketing; and Robert H. Herrell, senior vice
president-manufacturing. On the effective date of the Plan, R.
Blair Kriever, current JWC president, will become senior vice
president-administration and public affairs for Celotex.



Strong Outlook In the early years of its operations, the Trust
will have substantial liquid assets including assets valued at
$375 million from a settlement with Walter Industries,
approximately $250 million from insurance settlements, and
substantial cash contributed by Celotex. As these assets make up
a significant portion of the Trust's limited funds, they are
expected to meet the Trust's projected cash needs during this
period. Hundreds of millions of dollars in additional insurance
proceeds may also be available to the Trust as a result of
litigation over insurance coverage, some of which may be
available to the Trust in the near term.



Because of the assurances Section 524(g) provides, Celotex
will now have unimpaired access to financial markets, an
opportunity the company has not had for more than a decade.
"We have been informed by investment bankers assisting the
Trust that bonds issued by Celotex will be investment
grade," noted Ross. This will ensure capital resources are
available for the continued growth of Celotex. The Trust has
already expressed its support for Celotex' exploration of new
opportunities as part of the Trust's commitment to maximize the
value of the company. "The Trust will be no different than
any other owner seeking to maximize the value of its
investment," said Ross.



In summary, (a) substantial assets, including the full value
of Celotex, are being contributed to the Trust,



(b) the Trust has been designed under the requirements of
Section 524(g) to make appropriate adjustments to ensure all
present and future asbestos claims will be treated in
substantially the same manner,



(c) the Trust has adequate liquid assets for the next several
years to pay asbestos claims, and accordingly has no immediate
need to liquidate its ownership interest in Celotex, and,



(d) the Trust must retain ownership in Celotex to fully access
significant tax benefits.



Once the Trust's liquidity position is materially decreased
and the value of the company is enhanced through the receipt of
tax benefits and by the growth of its business, which events are
expected to occur in approximately five to seven years, the Trust
could divest itself of Celotex to obtain additional liquidity to
pay future asbestos claimants. This divestiture could take the
form of the sale of the company or a public stock offering of the
company's shares.



Celotex will continue as a major manufacturer of building
materials for domestic and international commercial and
residential markets. The company manufactures residential roof
shingles, commercial built-up roofing systems and roof insulation
products. Celotex also manufactures rigid foam insulations,
gypsum wallboard, fiberboard sheathing and mineral ceiling tiles
and panels for retail and commercial use. In 1996, sales were
approximately $700 million. The company employs approximately
3,000 persons and operates 26 manufacturing facilities located
throughout the United States.



SOURCE The Celotex Corporation /CONTACT: Jeffrey W. Warren,
the Celotex Corporation, 813-224-9255/






Toy Biz, Inc. Announces Authorization to
Repurchase up to 3 Million Shares of Common Stock



NEW YORK, NY - March 20, 1997 - Toy Biz, Inc. (NYSE: TBZ)
today announced that its Board of Directors has authorized the
repurchase of up to three million shares of the Company's Class A
Common Stock from time to time on the open market at prevailing
prices, subject to market conditions.



Joseph Ahearn, President and CEO of the Company, said,
"The Company believes Toy Biz stock is undervalued, and the
purchase of our Common Stock at current prices is a very
favorable investment opportunity."



Toy Biz, Inc. designs, markets and distributes new and
traditional toys in the boys, girls, preschool, activity and
electronic toy categories featuring major entertainment and
consumer brand name properties under agreements with href="chap11.marvel.html">Marvel, NASCAR, Coleman, Disney,
Gerber, Henson, MCA/Universal and Warner Bros.



Forward Looking Statements: Except for historical information
contained herein, the statements in this news release regarding
the Company's products, licensing relationships and growth plans
are forward-looking statements that are dependent upon certain
risks and uncertainties, including those relating to the outcome
of the Marvel bankruptcy, the level of media exposure or the
popularity of the Company's characters and trademarks, consumer
acceptance of the Company's new product introductions, the
Company's dependence on Chinese manufacturers, U.S. trade
relations with China, changing consumer preferences, production
delays or shortfalls and general economic conditions. Those and
other risks and uncertainties are described in the Company's
filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including
the Company's Annual Report on Form 10K and Quarterly Reports on
Form 10Q.



SOURCE Toy Biz, Inc. /CONTACT: Diane Perry, 212-704-8293, or
Joseph Kist, 212-704-8239, both of Edelman Financial/






Brooke reaches comprehensive settlement
of tobacco litigation



MIAMI, FL-March 20, 1997-- Parallel Settlements With Attorneys
General of 17 States And Class Action Plaintiffs Will Protect
Brooke and Liggett From All Smoking-Related Claims; Brooke Now
Has Settlements With All 22 States That Have Sued Liggett To
Cooperate, Turn Over Documents And Provide Testimony; Will Add
"Smoking Is Addictive" Label To All Cigarettes



Brooke Group Ltd. (NYSE: BGL) announced today that Brooke and
its Liggett Group tobacco subsidiary have reached a comprehensive
settlement of tobacco litigation through parallel agreements with
the Attorneys General of 17 states and class action and
individual plaintiffs. Brooke and Liggett now have settlements
with all 22 states that have brought suit against the tobacco
companies. Brooke and Liggett will be protected from all
smoking-related claims, including both addiction-based and
tobacco injury claims, by the 22 states and, upon court approval,
the class action and individual plaintiffs.



The settlement with the Attorneys General, which does not
require court approval, includes the states of Arizona,
Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan,
Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah,
Washington and Wisconsin. Brooke and Liggett's previous
settlements with the Attorneys General of Florida, Louisiana,
Massachusetts, Mississippi and West Virginia remain in effect.



The mandatory settlement with class action tobacco plaintiffs
and representatives of individual smokers covers all claims by
smokers nationwide. The settlement class is represented by, among
others, the Lieutenant Governor of Alabama and plaintiffs
attorney Norwood Wilner. The tobacco plaintiffs today filed the
mandatory settlement agreement in Alabama state court in Mobile,
where the court granted preliminary approval. Class members will
be notified of the settlement and have a chance to appear at a
later court hearing. Pursuant to the law governing mandatory
settlements, there are no opt out provisions in this settlement,
except for Medicaid claims by states that are not party to the
Attorneys General agreement.



Pursuant to the settlements, Brooke and Liggett have agreed to
cooperate fully with the Attorneys General and the class action
plaintiffs in their lawsuits against the tobacco industry. Brooke
and Liggett have agreed to turn over to these parties all tobacco
documents in their possession other than those subject to claims
of joint privilege and to waive, subject to court order, certain
attorney-client privileges and work product protections regarding
Liggett smoking-related documents. The Attorneys General and the
class action plaintiffs have agreed to keep Liggett documents
under protective order and, subject to final court approval,
limit their use to those actions brought by parties to the
settlement agreements. Those documents that may be subject to a
joint defense privilege with other tobacco companies will not be
given and have not been given or disclosed to the Attorneys
General and class action plaintiffs, but will be, pursuant to
court order, submitted to the appropriate court and placed under
seal. Additionally, Brooke and Liggett have agreed to offer their
employees to provide witness interviews and to testify at
deposition and at trial.



Pursuant to both settlement agreements, Liggett has also
agreed to place an additional warning on its cigarettes stating
that "smoking is addictive." Liggett has also agreed to
issue a public statement requested by the Attorneys General.



"We are pleased to have reached these historic
settlements that will protect Liggett from virtually all
smoking-related claims," said Bennett S. LeBow, chairman and
chief executive officer of Brooke Group. "This comprehensive
settlement removes the darkening cloud of tobacco litigation and
potentially bankrupting judgments hovering over Liggett, and will
permit us to get on with running our business. We believe that
peaceful coexistence on reasonable terms makes far more sense for
the tobacco industry than continuing denial of the legal and
political reality of today's situation. We're confident that our
settlements -- which demonstrate that a compromise with tobacco
foes is possible --will secure Liggett's future."



Under the terms of the new settlement agreements, Liggett will
pay 25% of its pretax income for the next 25 years into a
settlement fund. Monies collected in the settlement fund will be
overseen by a court-appointed committee and utilized to
compensate state health care programs and settlement class
members and to provide counter- market advertising. Liggett has
also agreed to phase-in compliance with certain proposed FDA
regulations regarding smoking by children and adolescents,
including a prohibition on the use of cartoon characters in
tobacco advertising and limitations on the use of promotional
materials and distribution of sample packages where minors are
present.



Under both settlement agreements, any other tobacco defendant
in the lawsuits, except Philip Morris, merging or combining with
Liggett or Brooke would receive certain settlement benefits,
including limiting its potential liability to its domestic
tobacco operations and not having to post a bond to appeal any
future adverse judgment. In addition, in such a combination,
Liggett would pay the settlement fund a total of $25 million.
Both the Attorneys General and the settlement class have also
agreed not to seek an injunction preventing a defendant combining
with Liggett or Brooke from spinning off any of its affiliates
which are not engaged in the domestic tobacco business.



As pioneers of these settlements, Brooke and Liggett are
entitled to certain "most favored nation" benefits not
available to the other defendants. In addition, in the event of a
"global" tobacco settlement enacted through Federal
legislation, the Attorneys General and tobacco plaintiffs have
agreed to use their "best efforts" to ensure that
Brooke and Liggett's liability under such a plan should be no
more onerous than under these settlements.



"We've received `best efforts' commitments from the
Attorneys General of all 22 states that have sued as well as from
the tobacco plaintiffs' attorneys to work to limit Liggett's
liability to these settlement terms if a legislative settlement
is eventually proposed and enacted," added LeBow.



Brooke Group is a holding company which owns Liggett Group
Inc. and controlling interests in Liggett-Ducat and New Valley
Corporation.



CONTACT: George Sard/Anna Cordasco/Paul Caminiti Sard
Verbinnen & Co 212/687-8080