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SGB NEWS & NOTES: BEHIND THE LINES AT GENESIS DIRECT
Published April 2, 1998
Genesis Direct "has become the leading direct merchandiser of sporting goods in less than 18 months," and its sports division "could total" $300M annually "by the time Genesis is finished cornering the market," according to Andy Bernstein of SPORTING GOODS BUSINESS. The direct marketing company, which is "set to go public on the NASDAQ in May," has 29 catalogs in its "ever-expanding arsenal." Bernstein writes that although the company "piled-up a deficit of $73.1 million as of the end of 1997 ... company officials say things are right on track with projections, and Genesis should be profitable by 2000." The IPO has attracted a "who's who of underwriters," including Bear, Stearns & Co., Goldman Sachs and Salomon Smith Barney. The offering is expected to generate "up to" $180M, and the company will "likely be valued" $500M (SGB, 3/25 issue). HATS OFF: SGB's Chris McEvoy reports that Sports Specialties "is bullish" on prospects for its new Heritage cap, made of 100% cotton ribbed dobby fabric. It "felt so strongly" about the look and textured feel of the fabric, that it negotiated an exclusive deal for the material, through June '99. The caps ship July 1 (SGB, 3/25). HOOP DREAMS: Converse Chair & CEO Glenn Rupp is featured in the SGB interview. Rupp, when asked why the basketball shoe industry is "suffering": "Kids are a little turned off by the old formula starring the hero, the Hollywood hype -- the brash basketball approach to the business. That's why we've adopted the tag line, 'Stay True.' This means keep it real, don't forget where you came from." Rupp, on NBA endorsers: "There are very few who actually sold product. There is Michael Jordan, and then there is maybe a handful of others. Even the second tier hasn't been cutting the mustard" (SGB, 3/25 issue).