FINANCE

GGP update: Simon says latest offer removes some uncertainty

BY CSA STAFF

Indianapolis Simon Property Group said late Thursday that a new plan by mall owner General Growth Properties to exit bankruptcy with funding from Brookfield Asset Management and two other creditors has resolved some uncertainty about the viability of the deal.

General Growth’s biggest debt and equity holders are offering to invest $3.93 billion in the company, adding to $2.63 billion pledged by Toronto-based Brookfield as the mall owner restructures in bankruptcy. Bruce Berkowitz’s Fairholme Capital Management LLC and William Ackman’s Pershing Square Capital Management LP are offering the additional money.

Essentially, the three creditors’ offer matches Simon’s bid of more than $10 billion to pay all of GGP’s unsecured creditors in cash, taking it out of bankruptcy.

“The first plan had a tremendous amount of uncertainty on how ultimately it would impact shareholders,” Simon Property Group chief David Simon said Thursday. “The second plan eliminates some of that uncertainty, but not all of it.”

Simon is the nation’s largest owner of shopping malls. He has tried since last month to persuade Chicago-based General Growth that its offer would represent a quick exit from Chapter 11 bankruptcy and the best value for its shareholders.

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PacSun 4Q comps down 19%

BY CSA STAFF

ANAHEIM, Calif. Pacific Sunwear of California announced that total sales for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2009 ended Jan. 30 were $293 million, a decrease of 17% from total sales of $352 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2008 ended Jan.31, 2009. Total Company same-store sales decreased 19% during the fourth quarter of fiscal 2009.

For the fourth quarter of fiscal 2009, the company reported a net loss of $36 million, or 56 cents per share, compared with a net loss of $27 million, or 42 centsper share, for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2008.

“When I joined PacSun, given all that we needed to do I knew it would take time to turn things around. Eight months into the job, I’m encouraged by the changes we’re making and the prospects for PacSun to once again become a leader for teens in the mall,” stated Gary Schoenfeld, president and CEO.

Total sales for fiscal 2009 ended Jan. 30 were $1.03 billion, a decrease of 18% from total sales of $1.25 billion during fiscal 2008 ended Jan. 31, 2009. Total company same-store sales decreased 20% during fiscal 2009. For fiscal 2009, the company reported a loss of $70 million, or $1.07 per share, compared with a loss from continuing operations of $39 million, or 59 cents per share, in fiscal 2008.

Pacific Sunwear said it expects to report a GAAP net loss per share of 50 cents to 60 cents for the first quarter of fiscal 2010. The company expects same-store sales to decline in a range of 13% to 18% for the quarter.

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Staples B-to-B division launches new Web site

BY CSA STAFF

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. Staples announced that its business-to-business division, Staples Advantage, has launched a new Web site (StaplesAdvantage.com) to address customers’ growing demands for supplier consolidation and reduced procurement costs.

The site enables customers to view the full range of Staples Advantage’s products and services, including five newly integrated business-to-business service offerings, the company reported.

 

The five new services offered include:

  • Staples print solutions, a comprehensive document and print management offering.
  • Staples facility solutions, a national cleaning and maintenance programs in the country, offering a wide assortment of janitorial and cleaning supplies and exclusive environmentally preferable cleaners.
  • Staples promotional products, a full-service corporate branding solution, featuring more than 700,000 customizable items and an in-house design and creative marketing staff.
  • Staples technology solutions, a complete array of IT services from data center solutions and printer fleet management services to network services and everyday desktop technology products
  • Business Interiors by Staples, a full-scale furniture and interior design service.

“Businesses today are eager to create efficiencies in procurement given reduced human and capital resources,” said Jay Baitler, EVP Staples Advantage. “Our new StaplesAdvantage.com Web site helps our current and potential new customers understand how we can deliver much more than office supplies — to support their supplier consolidation goals and find new opportunities for savings.”

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