Braun's Fashions Corporation's Nasdaq
Trading Symbol to Drop Bankruptcy Designation Following
Successful Reorganization and Strong Operating Performance
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - April 18, 1997 - href="chap11.brauns.html">Braun's Fashions Corporation (Nasdaq-NNM:
BFCI) today announced that Nasdaq will remove the bankruptcy
designation "Q" from the Company's trading symbol
effective Friday, April 18, following its successful
reorganization and strong current operating performance. This
decision will allow certain institutional investors, previously
restricted, to now trade in the Company's stock.
The Company recently reported a 35% same store sales increase
for March, the first month in its new fiscal year. The March
results followed strong third and fourth quarter performances
from continuing operations, where same store sales increased 15%
and 18%, respectively.
Nicholas H. Cook, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer stated,
"The final piece is now in place with Nasdaq acknowledging
our successful reorganization. Our operating performance has been
outstanding, our cash position is strong and our outlook
continues to be very optimistic."
Braun's Fashions Corporation, based in Minneapolis, Minn., is
a specialty retailer of women's fashions. Braun's has 174 stores
in 20 states, primarily in the Midwest and Pacific Northwest.
SOURCE Braun's Fashions Corporation /CONTACT: Herbert D.
Froemming, President and Chief Operating Officer of Braun's
Fashions Corporation, 612-551-5000/
Seven Cajun Electric Co-ops Sign with
SHREVEPORT, La., April 18, 1997 - Seven electric distribution
cooperatives in Louisiana have signed exclusive term sheets
supporting Southwestern Electric Power Company's plan in the
bankruptcy of Cajun Electric Power
Cooperative, Inc. An eighth cooperative also has voted to
support the SWEPCO plan.
The term sheets include the major provisions of the 25-year
power supply agreements under which SWEPCO would provide
electricity to the cooperatives if the SWEPCO plan is confirmed
by the bankruptcy court. In signing the term sheets, the
cooperatives have agreed to support the SWEPCO plan exclusively
throughout the confirmation process and, if the SWEPCO plan is
successful, to sign power supply agreements that are now being
"These term sheets are a strong indication of the
potential benefits to Louisiana's co-op ratepayers from our
partnership with SWEPCO," said John Sharp, local counsel for
Dixie Electric Membership Corp. and the Members Committee of
seven Cajun cooperatives. "For years, rural ratepayers have
suffered under high electric rates. This action by the co-ops is
another major step in bringing the rates down to where they
should be. SWEPCO's plan is clearly the best for Louisiana's
ratepayers, and we're committed to supporting it throughout the
Sharp also commended the leadership of the eight cooperatives.
"The co-op boards of directors deserve a lot of credit for
withstanding tremendous pressure from the federal government's
Rural Utilities Service to surrender and accept the higher rates
in the plan offered by NRG Energy, Zeigler Coal Holding Co. and
Southern Electric International. That shows remarkable resolve, a
lot of backbone, compassion for the ratepayers and a desire to do
what's right," Sharp said.
SWEPCO President Mike Smith said, "Together, we continue
to demonstrate to the bankruptcy court that the plan proposed
jointly by SWEPCO, the Members Committee of cooperatives and
Entergy Gulf States is the best long-term solution to Cajun's
bankruptcy. The low wholesale cost, flexible pricing options and
open market access provisions outlined in these term sheets are
crucial to the future competitiveness of the co-ops. We believe
our balanced approach of competitive rate paths for the
cooperatives and payment of a fair price for the purchase of
Cajun's non-nuclear assets makes the SWEPCO plan the solution
that makes sense for everyone."
Cooperatives signing the term sheets this week are Beauregard
Electric Cooperative, Inc., Dixie Electric Membership Corp.,
Jefferson Davis Electric Cooperative, Inc., Northeast Louisiana
Power Cooperative, Inc., South Louisiana Electric Cooperative
Association, Valley Electric Membership Corp. and Washington-St.
Tammany Electric Cooperative, Inc. All are part of the Members
Committee of Cajun cooperatives.
The board of directors of Claiborne Electric Cooperative, Inc.
also has voted to support the SWEPCO plan. SWEPCO officials
expect to receive a signed term sheet from Claiborne Electric
"We appreciate the care and deliberation which the
leaders of each co-op have shown in working with us to develop
these term sheets and the power supply agreements that will
follow," Smith said. "Ours is a powerful partnership
which will be good for the co- ops and their customers all across
the state if our plan is confirmed by the court."
SWEPCO has had contact with several of Cajun's other four
member cooperatives - Concordia Electric Cooperative, Inc.,
Pointe Coupee Electric Membership Corp., Southwest Louisiana
Electric Membership Corp. and Teche Electric Cooperative, Inc.
Three of the four - Southwest Louisiana, Concordia and Pointe
Coupee - have signed memoranda of understanding to support the
plan submitted jointly by NRG Energy, Zeigler Coal Holding Co.
and Southern Electric International. Those agreements allow the
co-ops to talk to other bidders.
SWEPCO will continue negotiations with any other co-ops that
The SWEPCO term sheets support the second amended plan filed
in bankruptcy court on Oct. 26, 1996, by SWEPCO, Entergy Gulf
States and the Members Committee, which currently consists of
seven of the 12 distribution cooperatives served by Cajun. Two
competing plans have been filed, each with different rate paths,
asset purchase proposals and other provisions. All the plans are
subject to closing conditions, approval of the bankruptcy court
and regulatory approvals.
Under the SWEPCO proposal, each co-op would be able to choose
a rate option that varies with fuel prices, starting at an
average of less than 3.45 cents per kilowatt hour and guaranteed
not to exceed an average of 3.6 cents in the first year.
Alternately, they would be able to choose a fixed rate option of
3.8 cents for 10 years.
Under either of the proposed rates, each cooperative would
preserve the option, at five-year intervals, to move from a fixed
rate to an actual fuel cost rate, or from an actual fuel cost
rate to a new fixed rate that would be negotiated between the
co-op and SWEPCO at the time.
The co-ops also would have market flexibility under the SWEPCO
proposal through provisions which would allow the cooperatives to
shop for power on the open market when their combined energy
needs exceed an agreed upon level, or to buy additional power
from SWEPCO at the same rate as their base supply rate within
certain contract parameters.
Over the 25-year term of the contracts, the projected rate
path under SWEPCO's plan would start significantly lower than the
competing plans, increase somewhat over the middle years and
decline in the later years.
Marvin McGregor, SWEPCO's Cajun Electric project manager, said
SWEPCO's plan would provide the lowest initial rate of the three
competing plans, and during the first year alone, it would save
the co-ops more than $31 million as compared with either of the
other two plans.
In addition, under proposed contracts with the cooperatives,
the SWEPCO plan would be the lowest-cost plan over a 10-, 15- or
25-year time horizon, according to McGregor. "For example,
an April 1997 report by J. Kennedy and Associates to the
Louisiana Public Service Commission says the SWEPCO plan offers
15-year present value savings for the cooperatives of $42 million
as compared to the Enron Capital & Trade Resources plan, and
$192 million as compared to the NRG Energy, Zeigler Coal Holding
Co. and Southern Electric International plan," McGregor
said. The Louisiana Public Service Commission has used a 15-year
period for analysis in its continuing review of wholesale rate in
the competing bankruptcy plans.
Confirmation hearings reconvene in federal bankruptcy court in
Opelousas, La., April 21-24 and are scheduled to continue during
May and June.
Southwestern Electric Power Company, based in Shreveport, La.,
is a subsidiary of Central and South West Corp. (NYSE: CSR), a
Dallas-based public utility holding company. Entergy Gulf States,
formerly know as Gulf States Utilities, is a wholly owned
subsidiary of Entergy Corp. (NYSE: ETR).
Plan Summary SWEPCO/Members Committee/Entergy Gulf States
-- A SWEPCO subsidiary or affiliate would acquire all of
Cajun's non-nuclear assets, including the big Cajun 1 gas-fired
plant, the Big Cajun II coal-fired plant and related non-nuclear
- $780 million in cash, - up to an additional $20 million to
pay certain other bankruptcy claims and expenses, and - an
additional $7 million to acquire claims of unsecured creditors.
-- SWEPCO and the cooperatives would enter into new 25-year
power supply agreements featuring low wholesale rates, rate
options and market flexibility:
- Rate Option 1 - based on actual fuel costs, with average
initial rate of less than 3.45 cents per kilowatt-hour
(guaranteed average maximum of 3.6 cents in the first year). -
Rate Option 2 - using preset rate components with average fixed
of 3.8 cents per kilowatt-hour for 10 years. - Opportunity to
elect, at 5-year intervals, to move from fixed rate to actual
fuel cost rate, or from actual fuel cost rate to new, negotiated
fixed rate. - Market flexibility to acquire power on the open
market when the co-ops' power requirements exceed mutually agreed
-- The plan would settle all power supply contract claims and
litigation in the bankruptcy case.
-- The plan is subject to a number of conditions, including,
without limitation, finalization of mutually acceptable
arrangements between SWEPCO and the Member cooperatives, approval
of the bankruptcy court, Louisiana Public Service Commission and
other regulatory approval, and
various closing conditions.
SOURCE SWEPCO /CONTACT: Peter Main of Southwestern Electric
Power Company, 318-673-3530/
Jayhawk Acceptance Corp. reaches
agreement with primary lenders and files plan of reorganization
DALLAS, TX --April 18, 1997--Jayhawk
Acceptance Corp. (NASDAQ:JACCQ) announced today that is has
filed a proposed plan of reorganization with the Bankruptcy
Court, which has been agreed to by its primary lender.
Under the proposed plan of reorganization, which is subject to
Bankruptcy Court approval, Jayhawk will continue its business
operations, and pay its creditors in full with its primary lender
being repaid in monthly installments with the balance due in
The company expects to file its 10-K annual report later
today, which will report 1996 revenues of $53.6 million and a net
loss of $49.7 million. The net loss figure reflects adjustments
resulting from measures taken by the company in connection with
its Chapter 11 proceeding, a decreased number of contracts being
submitted to the company for purchase consideration, and the
company's recognition that it will not in the near future be
doing the same level of business with its dealers as it was doing
prior to the Chapter 11 filing.
Because a continuing level of contract purchases is an
important factor in the company's determination of the
recoverability of advances paid to automobile dealers, the
company reevaluated the adequacy of its allowance for credit
losses, and as a result of this reevaluation, the company
increased the previously-announced fourth quarter special charge
to $66.5 million to increase its allowance for credit losses.
The company anticipates that because of the Chapter 11
proceeding and 1996 net loss, the report of its independent
auditors will express doubts about the company's ability to
continue as a going concern.
Jayhawk Acceptance Corp. is a specialized financial services
company headquartered in Dallas, Texas.
Except for the historical information contained herein, the
matters discussed in this press release, including projected
collections and any beliefs with respect thereto, are forward
looking statements that are dependent upon a number of risks and
uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ
materially from those in the forward looking statements. These
risks and uncertainties include the recoverability of advances
paid to dealers and physicians for contracts and loans, the
delinquency and default rates with respect to the contracts and
loans included in the company's portfolio, the impact of
competitive services and products, changes in market conditions,
the limited operating history of Jayhawk's medical finance
business, the impact of changes in regulation or litigation, the
management of growth and the other risks described in the
company's SEC filings. The company does not intend to provide
updated information about the matters referred to in these
forward looking statements, other than in the context of
management's discussion and analysis in the company's quarterly
and annual reports on Form 10-Q and 10-K.
CONTACT: Jayhawk Acceptance Corp., Dallas Virginia L.
The Singing Machine Company Files
POMPANO BEACH, Fla., April 18, 1997 - href="chap11.singing.html">The Singing Machine Company, Inc.
(OTC Bulletin Board: SING) today filed for protection from its
creditors under the provisions of Chapter 11. This filing is the
result of unresolved negotiations to schedule payments with
several key creditors. The company will operate under the
protection of the filing and does not anticipate interruption of
deliveries to any of its customers.
"The pressure is now off," said company C.E.0. Eddie
Steele, "and now we can concentrate on building upon the
sales success of last year, and continue to improve our market
share in the mass market karaoke field, while improving
"Chapter 11 will give us the opportunity to put into
place a comprehensive restructuring plan, while maintaining
uninterrupted deliveries to our key mass merchant
customers," said Steele. He added, "This filing is a
necessity to aid The Singing Machine in building toward financial
payback for its shareholders."
The Singing Machine Company, Inc., is America's leading
consumer karaoke supplier. Its tape and CD+Graphics karaoke
players are marketed under the Memorex brand name. The company
sells Singing Machine brand karaoke sing-along cassettes and
CD+Graphics discs. Singing Machine brand products are sold
through major mass merchants and catalog retailers in the United
SOURCE The Singing Machine Company, Inc. /CONTACT: Eddie
Steele, C.E.O, The Singing Machine Company, 954-968-8006/
Ajay Sports Announces Year-End 1996 Results
DELAVAN, Wis., April 18, 1997 - Ajay Sports, Inc. (Nasdaq:
AJAY) announced its financial results for the full year 1996.
Sales for the year ended December 31, 1996 were $24,341,000, a
30% increase from the $18,728,000 reported as of year-end 1995.
Approximately half of this increase was a result of having the
sales of the Company's Palm Springs Golf subsidiary included in
Ajay's revenues for the full twelve months in 1996, compared to
only three months in 1995.
The Company reported a net loss of $1,733,000 for the year
ended December 31, 1996 compared to a net loss of $444,000 for
the year ended December 31, 1995. Over 65% of this loss was
attributable to the Palm Springs Golf operation.
The Company's mass-market golf business, Ajay Leisure
Products, reported a 7% increase in sales while reporting a
decline in earnings from operations, compared to year-ago
results. Over 50% of this decline was related to the cost of the
Korex acquisition completed in the prior year. The Company's
casual living furniture business, Leisure Life, reported a 91%
increase in sales, to $2.7 million, and a significant improvement
in its operating results, although this subsidiary did report a
loss from operations in 1996. A comparison to the prior year's
sales and earnings from operations for Palm Springs Golf was not
meaningful because this subsidiary was a part of Ajay for only
three months in 1995.
On April 14, 1997, the Company's lender agreed to waive the
previously announced bank loan technical default and restore
Ajay's credit limit to $13.5 million, subject to certain
restrictions, from the $12.0 million to which it was reduced on
February 12, 1997. The Company is continuing to work with new
lenders to replace the current facility and increase its credit
Ajay Sports chairman and chief executive Thomas W. Itin
stated, "The losses at Palm Springs Golf and the restricted
bank financing, which was a direct result of the losses at Palm
Springs, have had a significant impact on Ajay's profitability
and flexibility for the past fifteen months. At Palm Springs
Golf, a number of cost reduction initiatives and management
changes have recently been made as we continue with our plan to
make this subsidiary profitable in the future."
Mr. Itin continued, "The bank financing difficulties and
operating problems at Palm Springs Golf have overshadowed a solid
performance in the continuing operations at Ajay Leisure and a
significant improvement at Leisure Life in 1996 and especially in
the first quarter of 1997. We are working diligently to arrange a
more satisfactory credit facility that will allow us to continue
the process of turning around the operations of Palm Springs Golf
and expanding the opportunities at Ajay Leisure and Leisure Life,
which have been constrained due to our cash position."
Ajay Sports, Inc. manufactures and markets leisure living
products, including Spalding(TM) golf bags, carts, gloves and
accessories, Palm Springs Golf(TM) clubs, bags and accessories,
and In-Motion(TM) casual living furniture, for the United States
and select foreign markets.
AJAY SPORTS, INC. AND
For the Years Ended December 31,
1996 and December 31, 1995
(in thousands, except per
Dec. 31, 1996
Net sales $24,341
$18,728 Cost of sales
20,759 15,291 Gross Profit
Selling, general and
admin. expenses 5,067
Operating income (loss) (1,485)
190 Non-operating expenses
1,141 842 Income (loss)
before taxes (2,626) (652)
Income tax expense (benefit) (893)
(208) Net income (loss)
(1,733) (444) Net income
(loss) per share (0.09)
(0.03) Wgtd. avg. shs/equivalents
This news release may contain forward-looking statements
relating to the Company, its current operations and its future
prospects, which involve risks and uncertainties that could cause
actual results to differ materially from those projected. These
and other risks relating to the Company's business are set forth
in the Company's most recent Form 10-K and other filings with the
Securities and Exchange Commission.
SOURCE Ajay Sports, Inc. /CONTACT: Thomas W. Itin, Chairman
and CEO of Ajay Sports, 810-851-5651/