By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
LITTLETON, COLO. — Direct broadcast satellite provider EchoStar Communications, which provides the Dish Network service, said it is offering $1 billion aggregate principal amount of Convertible Subordinated Notes due in 2008. Net proceeds of the offering are expected to be used mainly for the construction, launch and insurance of additional satellites, strategic investments and acquisitions.
KING OF PRUSSIA, PA. — Despite organizational improvements in the first few months of the year and positive sales trends in the first two months of the quarter, liquidity issues and the inability to secure additional financing has led Zany Brainy to file Chapter 11. The specialty retailer of high-end toys, games, books and multimedia products has secured a commitment of $115 million Debtor-in-Possession financing, with bankruptcy court approval. Rapid growth — the acquisition of 60 Noodle Kidoodle stores, the opening of 27 new Zany Brainy locations and a substantial investment in an Internet strategy — along with a difficult retail climate, led to a decrease in sales and liquidity problems, the company said. Earlier, Zany Brainy had said its shares might be delisted from Nasdaq due to the failure of the company's common stock to maintain a minimum bid price of $1 per share.
PASADENA, CALIF. — Global technology and media company Gemstar-TV Guide International, which focuses on consumer entertainment, said revenue from its Technology and Licensing Sector for the first quarter ended March 31 was up 36 percent to $81.3 million, compared with $60 million in the year-ago period. This compares to the pro forma results for the same quarter last year and excludes non-recurring revenue. Operating income before stock compensation expenses, depreciation and amortization and non-recurring expenses (EBITDA) climbed 56 percent to $60.1 million, compared with $38.6 million in the same quarter last year. The technology sector includes the company's interactive program guide (IPG), which is built into various devices — including televisions, VCRs and set-top boxes — and displays a multiday TV program guide on the screen from which consumers can view, select, tune to or record programs.
WESTBOROUGH, MASS. — Wireless Internet messaging and mobile information provider Arch Wireless said its common stock and warrants will no longer be listed on the Nasdaq National Market. Arch common stock is eligible for quotation on the OTC Bulletin Board, an electronic over-the-counter quotation system. Arch has also proposed an exchange offer to reduce long-term debt and better align the company's capital structure with new growth opportunities. With the exchange, principal and debt would be reduced by approximately $343 million, and annual interest payments by $68 million from this September until September 2004.
NEW YORK — U.S. Philips Corp. and Austin, Texas-based Cirrus Logic have agreed to settle a patent dispute concerning 12C bus technology, which is a two-way bus system for controlling communications between integrated circuits. All claims between the companies have been dismissed, although Philips still continues the same infringement lawsuit against five other companies. The two companies have entered into a non-exclusive licensing agreement under which Cirrus is a licensee of Philips' 12C patent rights. Cirrus supplies high-performance analog and DSP chip solutions for Internet entertainment electronics.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.