Trouble Brews at Crescent Jewelers

May 27, 1999

Trouble Brews at Crescent Jewelers

In the wake of its CEO's resignation, Oakland, CA-based jewelry chain Crescent Jewelers is considering the sale of the company "in or out of bankruptcy" to resolve its financial problems.

Bradley Stinn, also president and CEO of Crescent's affiliate company Friedman's Inc., resigned yesterday as Crescent's CEO. He retains his position with Friedman's, a jewelry chain based in Savannah, GA, and his seat on the Crescent board of directors. His resignation will be effective when Crescent finds a replacement.

Crescent appointed a financial advisor to explore "financial alternatives," including a possible sale of the company, reports Reuters. Crescent was unable to reach an out-of-court settlement with its shareholders to restructure its balance sheet earlier this month. Friedman's says it has invested $25 million in Crescent, including $20 million of senior secured notes and $5 million of senior subordinated notes. The company says it is seeking ways to recover its notes receivable from Crescent.

Crescent operates 149 stores in seven western states, while Friedman's has 495 stores in 22 states.

- by Stacey King