UPDATE 1-Battle looms at American Safety Razor sale hearing

Tue Sep 28, 2010 7:08am EDT

* Energizer says interested in bidding for American Safety Razor

* American Safety Razor calls Energizer "frustrated bidder"

* Sale hearing on Tuesday

By Santosh Nadgir

BANGALORE, Sept 28 (Reuters) - A bankruptcy sale hearing for American Safety Razor Co on Tuesday will most likely be the venue of a heated legal battle between the company and larger rival Energizer Holdings Inc (ENR.N).

In a notice filed on Monday, Energizer said it remains highly interested in participating as a competitive bidder for bankrupt American Safety Razor and that it intends to be present at the hearing on Tuesday.

American Safety Razor responded saying that the last minute notice by Energizer was a flagrant breach of a previously signed non-disclosure agreement between the two parties.

"Energizer is merely a frustrated bidder and not a party in interest in the Chapter 11 cases - accordingly, Energizer should not be heard," American Safety Razor said.

American Safety Razor's current restructuring proposal involves selling off the company to its first-lien lenders, led by UBS AG (UBSN.VX), for an undisclosed amount.

In the court filing, American Safety Razor claimed that Energizer had, in a month-long campaign, tried to strong-arm the company into accepting an inferior bid.

Energizer, which owns Schick razors, was not immediately available for comment.

Privately held American Safety Razor, which filed for bankruptcy in July, was hit hard after losing a contract from Wal-Mart Stores Inc (WMT.N) in 2009.

In addition to razor brands such as Matrix3, M5Magnum, Solara and Mystique, American Safety Razor makes single-edged blades used in utility knives and surgical tools. Its shaving razors are typically sold in drug stores such as Walgreen Co (WAG.N) under the store's own brand.

The case is In re: American Safety Razor Co LLC, US Bankruptcy Court, District of Delaware, No. 10-12351. (Reporting by Santosh Nadgir in Bangalore; Editing by Roshni Menon)

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