NO DEAL: The phone's been ringing off the hook at Ellen Tracy. And Herb Gallen, chairman of the $200 million sportswear powerhouse, is telling everyone no, the company hasn't been sold.
"It has not been sold. There is no deal," he said Monday in response to widespread rumors the firm had changed hands.
Gallen admitted that Ellen Tracy, in fact, has been on the market--for 10 years. "Every year I talk to people, but there's no deal." He pointed out that he came close to selling the company three times in the last eight years, but each time the deal fell through at the last minute.
Gallen's price is said to be very steep, and he wants to keep an ownership stake.
"We're exploring everything. I'm getting a little older," said Gallen, in his mid-70s, who founded Ellen Tracy 45 years ago.
So when might he have a financial arrangement to talk about?
"It could be two months, six months or three years," he said, noting that when he signs an agreement, he'll talk about it. Not a moment sooner.

Urban Cowgirl: Nicole Miller runway regular Donna Hanover Giuliani was in the first row when Miller presented her cowgirl looks for fall. When asked if she would ever wear any of the Western garb, Giuliani replied, "Well, it's not high fringe or Roy Rogers, or anything. Sure I would. I mean, I like country western music."

C'est Fini: First the show fizzled and now the company's gone.
All those controversial plans to broadcast couture shows live from Paris to three U.S. cities, for the small sum of $1,600 a ticket, have gone bust.
Paris Showcase Ltd., the firm behind the affair--which had Chambre Syndicale head Jacques Mouclier in a tiff with some designers who refused to take part--is liquidating in bankruptcy. The New York firm had agreed to pay the Chambre Syndicale $1 million to broadcast the shows via satellite to Chicago, New York and Los Angeles, but just couldn't sell many tickets. Plus, an unknown backer failed to come up with a "several million dollar" investment.
Francis J. Harvey Jr., counsel to Paris Fashion Showcase, said the venture had to sell 1,000 tickets to be successful, but actually sold "a lot less than that."
"I guess the failure to sell enough tickets here proved that the fashion industry was not ready to pay between $1,000 and $1,600 a ticket to see the [couture] shows live."

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