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Systemax Wins Bid For Circuit City Brand: Report

Port Washington, N.Y. — Systemax may be adding Circuit City to its growing roster of retail brands.

According to a Reuters report, the Long Island IT manufacturer and marketer has won a bankruptcy auction for the CE chain’s intellectual property and e-commerce business.

The amount of the winning bid was not disclosed, although Systemax had initially offered Circuit City $6.5 million and a percentage of sales for 30 months. Other bidders were believed to include Gordon Brothers and Hilco Consumer Capital, which helped liquidate Circuit City’s stores and had formed a joint venture to acquire its brand and online operations.

The transaction awaits approval by a U.S. bankruptcy court tomorrow, Circuit City consultant Streambank told the news service.

Systemax previously said the purchase “would further extend its position as a leader in online retailing of value-priced, branded consumer electronics.” The company similarly acquired the brand, trademarks and e-commerce business of CompUSA in January 2008. That deal, which fetched about $30 million, also included some 16 former CompUSA storefronts. Systemax also sells its products through its TigerDirect stores, catalog and Web site.

Systemax hired 13-year Circuit City veteran Enas Raynor last March as business development VP for its CompUSA unit, citing her experience as territory business manager of Circuit’s The City concept stores.

A Fortune 1000 company, Systemax sells PCs, computer supplies and accessories, consumer electronics and industrial products through branded e-commerce Web sites, direct-mail catalogs, relationship marketers and retail stores in North America and Europe. Its primary brands are TigerDirect, CompUSA, Misco and Global Industrial. It also manufactures and sells computers and accessories under the Systemax and Ultra brands and develops and markets ProfitCenter Software, a Web-based application for multichannel direct marketing companies. The company is scheduled to report its first-quarter earnings later today.