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Sharper Image Bankruptcy

Filed under: Business,Finance — Tags: , , , , , , , , — Paddy Wallbouncer @ 11:51 pm 2008 February 20

Like an end of another era, Sharper Image has filed for bankruptcy. Remember getting those catalogs and thinking “Wow, this is pretty cool stuff!” It’s hard to believe the company is actually 31years old. There always seemed to be something that was cutting edge, new, or just plain interesting. Getting the catalog and reading the stories around the products was fun to do.

In recent years though, it seemed the only thing they ever had were what seemed to be over priced air purification systems. The numbers bore this out as recently. Those purification systems made up about 40% of their sales.

Only five days ago Sharper Image replaced their CEO again -the second replacement in the last twelve months. The new CEO, Robert Conway, is purported to be a turnaround specialist. The last CEO, Steven Lightman, a former Fingerhut executive couldn’t stem the 26% slide in same store sales.

With the internet and all the shopping options it must be difficult to come up with products that can truly be branded and recognized without fear of copy. Anytime you see something “cool” in The Sharper Image catalog, you can bet you’ll find something comparable on EBay; and with a softening economy, more consumers are becoming bargain hunters. Yet, that being said, Brookstone, a store similar in products to The Sharper Image, posted banner revenues and profits, with a same store sales increase around 9 percent.

If you are looking for investment information, here’s a heads up: Sharper Image’s five largest creditors are reported to be UPS 6.7mil, Quebecor 3.6mil, Tom Tom 2.1mil, Garmin 2.1mil and Novus Print Media 1.7mil. This was not a buy and hold. In February 2004, the stock (NASDAQ Symbol: SHRP) was two cents short of $40, today it’s around a buck. We wouldn’t be surprised to see such a strong name rising like a phoenix, but you won’t see our money flocking to this one. We’ll keep you informed of this and other entertaining news.

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2 Comments

  • I found your site on google blog search and read a few of your other posts. Keep up the good work. Just added your RSS feed to my feed reader. Look forward to reading more from you.

    – Jason.

    Comment by Jason Elder — 2008 February 21 @ 12:34 am

  • Wow!!! This is the first time that I’ve heard about this. That is really too bad. Sharper Image has a lot of wonderful stuff but I guess people would like cheap than quality nowadays.

    Comment by Jojo — 2008 February 25 @ 2:46 am

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