Live from the Annual Catalog Conference: News Flash

Boston–Marietta, GA-based apparel cataloger Porto Banus has gone out of business. A source says that the company is currently in auction. The cataloger was reportedly in trouble by the end of last year, but it did manage to mail its spring book.

Santa Barbara, CA-based The Territory Ahead, part of Cornerstone Brands, plans to open multiple stores on the West Coast beginning later this year. The apparel cataloger currently has a single retail store, in Santa Barbara.

Dover Saddlery is trotting up the road. The Holliston, MA-based cataloger of saddles and related supplies will relocate its headquarters in August, to Littleton, MA. The company’s recent growth necessitates the move, says creative director Scott Soule. Dover has no plans to move its remote catalog production office and call center from North Conway, NH.

The lackluster economy is good news for at least one cataloger: Xandria Catalog Collection, a Brisbane, CA-based mailer of adult-entertainment products. “During a recession people tend to stay at home, ” explains Xandria’s Marcia Jackson. “We can offer them a unique entertainment option.”

School Specialty, a supplier of educational supplies to schools and teachers, enjoyed record revenue for the year ended April 28. Sales were $692.7 million, up more than 8% over last year’s $639.3 million. Net income fell, however, to $12.1 million from $18.5 million. The Appleton, WI-based mailer recorded a $4.5 million restructuring charge related to the integration of J.L. Hammett. School Specialty acquired Hammett’s K-12 wholesale division last year. School Specialty also announced the May acquisition of the TimeTracker line of student and teacher planners.

Minnetonka, MN-based Fingerhut recently promoted several executives. Steven Lightman, formerly president of Fingerhut subsidiary Arizona Mail Order, was named executive vice president of Fingerhut. Lightman in essence replaces Fingerhut catalog president Dick Tate, who retired. Meanwhile, Austin Patterson was promoted from chief financial officer of Arizona Mail Order to chief operating officer/ senior vice president. Paul Bona, formerly president of Fingerhut’s Figi’s food catalog, is vice president of affiliate marketing for Fingerhut.

And Wayne Garten is president of Fingerhut’s Popular Club title. He was the chief financial officer for computer cataloger Micro Warehouse. John Christiansen was promoted from vice president of marketing to senior vice president of marketing. And Paul Bona, formerly the president of Fingerhut’s Figi’s food catalog, is now vice president of affiliate marketing for Fingerhut. Also Fingerhut hired Wayne Garten as president of its Popular Club title. Garten was formerly the chief financial officer for computer cataloger Micro Warehouse.

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