After a day of intense bidding, multititle catalog holding company Taylor Corp. last week won a Connecticut bankruptcy court bidding war for the assets of New Hartford, CT-based Executive Greetings, whose business-to-business stationery catalogs include Baldwin Cooke, The Brookhollow Collection, and U.S. Diary. North Mankato, MN-based Taylor paid $68.6 million for the cataloger. The deal is expected to close by the end of the month.
“Taylor has succeeded in winning a company that has excellent prospects for stronger growth with a very solid financial backing,” says Executive Greetings CEO George Ittner. “I’m also pleased that the company’s creditors have achieved a decent recovery through the sale process.”
In fact, by getting more than $0.80 on the dollar for their debts and a minimum of $0.35-$0.40 for each dollar of debt after the secured debtors are paid, Executive Greetings’ secured debtors will fare better than they might have. That’s because the bidding brought up Taylor’s original bid up $15.6 million from its original “stalking horse” offer of $53 million made on Dec. 18.
The Section 363 auction required that bids be $1.8 million more than Taylor’s. And Eric Henzy, an attorney with the Hartford law firm of Reid and Riege that represented Executive Greetings in the bankruptcy case, told the Waterbury “Republican-American” that Taylor and an unidentified other bidder bid exchanged nearly 20 bids in the auction.
Once the deal is completed, all of Executive Greetings’ 400-plus employees will be laid off. At that time, however, many are expected to be given the opportunity to reapply for their jobs with Taylor. Larry Lorenzen, Taylor’s vice president of new business development, told the “Republican-American” that Taylor has yet to finalize plans for Executive Greetings and employees at its New Hartford headquarters, its New Britain, CT, telemarketing center, and a production plant in Texas.