JBT Supplement Is "Early Warning System"

May 13, 1999

JBT Supplement Is "Early Warning System"

A new supplement to the Jewelers' Board of Trade weekly report alerts subscribers to signs of potential trouble with a customer or supplier.

The supplement provides detailed information about bankruptcy filings, which includes the names of the largest creditors to the bankrupt company. "For instance, when Service Merchandise filed bankruptcy, there were stone houses and findings houses that weren't selling to them directly, but some of their major customers were among the 20 largest jewelry creditors to Service Merchandise," says Nat Earle, president of JBT. "It's a ripple effect – if they're not getting paid, I'm not getting paid."

In addition, there is a listing of new claims in the JBT collections department, which handles subscriber complaints about customers who haven't paid. This information, which Earle says is very popular, is already published in companies' individual credit reports, but subscribers need to purchase the report to see it. The supplement lists the name of the account, its JBT number and the amount of the claim.

Subscribers shouldn't view the listing as a blacklist, he says. "You should still consult the entire credit report. This is an early warning system. People won't spend $5 for a credit report, but they'll ship out $50,000 worth of goods without doing their homework," says Earle. "If we can help somebody by making them think twice before shipping out merchandise, this report will be worthwhile."

The supplement is currently being included with JBT's "green sheet," the weekly report of credit changes sent to all subscribers, for a six-week trial basis. After that it will cost $200 per year.

JBT, Warwick, RI; (401) 467-0055, fax (401) 467-1199.

- by Stacey King