NEW YORK -- Crystal Brands hopes to sell its private label women's sportswear business and EP Pro women's activewear business in a bankruptcy auction.

At a hearing scheduled for April 22 before Judge Prudence B. Abram, the company will seek bankruptcy court approval to hold the auction. The company has asked for sealed bids to be submitted by May 6.

The sale is part of a company strategy to pare its operations and focus primarily on its men's sportswear, which includes the Gant, Salty Dog and Izod brands.

Michael B. McLearn, vice president and general counsel, said the company, which filed a Chapter 11 petition on Jan. 21, decided to conduct an auction after receiving a purchase offer. McLearn would not reveal the name of the bidder or the size of the bid.

Earlier, the company announced it had put its costume jewelry business on the block. The firm's jewelry brands are Monet, Trifari and Marvella.

McLearn estimated EP's women's activewear division's sales at about $8 million a year and the private label women's sportswear division's volume at under $8 million. The EP Pro brand is sold through golf shops, while the private label merchandise is sold in department stores.

Crystal Brands also makes men's and women's active sportswear under the Izod Club and U.S. Open labels.

In another development, McLearn said the company is looking to sell its Gant men's dress shirt inventory and license out the Gant mark for dress shirts. He said no licensee has been identified yet.

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