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UPDATE 1-NexCen cuts 25 pct of New York workforce, mulls options
May 30, 2008 / 1:38 PM / 10 years ago

UPDATE 1-NexCen cuts 25 pct of New York workforce, mulls options

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May 30 (Reuters) - NexCen Brands NEXC.O, which has expressed substantial doubt about its ability to continue as a going concern, said it cut about 25 percent of its New York-based workforce to streamline its operations and is exploring options to enhance liquidity.

The company, which acquires and manages global brands generating revenue through licensing and franchising, said the strategic options include a possible sale of one or more of its brands.

The company’s portfolio includes ice cream brand MaggieMoo‘s, home furnishings unit Waverly and apparel line Bill Blass.

On Tuesday, Women’s Wear Daily reported that the company was looking to sell its Bill Blass and Waverly units to help reduce its debt and may be drawing interest from more than one possible suitor.

The company said it engaged N M Rothschild & Sons Ltd to explore strategic alternatives.

NexCen had said that due to an amendment to its bank credit facility in January, it is required to repay $30 million of the $70 million to finance its acquisition of Great American Cookie Co by Oct. 17.

In January, the company acquired Great American Cookie from Mrs. Fields Famous Brands LLC for about $89 million in cash and about $4.7 million in NexCen common stock.

NexCen also confirmed that active discussions continue with its lender regarding possible amendments to the bank credit facility as well as with other potential lenders regarding additional financing.

Shares of the company were trading up 4 cents at 67 cents Friday morning on Nasdaq. (Reporting by Swagata Gupta in Bangalore; Editing by Pratish Narayanan)

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