STOCK SALE, PERHAPS?: Guess Inc. last week received a request from the Armand Marciano Trust that the company file a shelf registration statement to register all of the shares of common stock — 6.5 million shares — in Guess that are held by the Trust. Marciano, who is the company’s senior vice president and assistant secretary, is on medical leave. Guess said it expects to file the registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission in the near future. The filing, under SEC rules, allows a company to comply with registration requirements up to two years prior to the public offering of securities.
A STOP-GAP MEASURE: Factory workers from Indonesia are appealing to U.S. consumers to boycott Gap products in a protest over labor conditions at factories in Southeast Asia, Africa and Latin America. Gap officials could not be reached for comment over the weekend. A spokeswoman for the specialty chain, which has been the target in the past of labor activists, said in a published report on Friday that the factories are not owned by Gap, but are independently contracted by Gap and other firms. The report said that Gap does pay minimum wage in most of the countries where it hires factories.
TAKING OVER: Dolce & Gabbana has acquired the assets of three D&G stores in California formerly operated by Axsinvest Inc. This brings the number of D&G boutiques in the U.S. to six, all of which are now owned by D&G Stores America Inc. The company is planning to open three new D&G boutiques in the U.S. next year and 10 additional stores in the following three years.
LET THE TRUCKS ROLL: President Bush gave the green light Wednesday for Mexican trucks to travel into the U.S. beyond commercial border zones, nearly a year after he said he wanted to allow them into the U.S. After years of delays and legal challenges, the U.S.-Mexico border is slated to be open soon to two-way traffic, as stipulated eight years ago in NAFTA. Before trucks and buses are allowed on U.S. roads, however, the Department of Transportation must review applications from carriers. The agency said in a statement that it has received 130 applications from Mexico truck and bus companies and expects to act on them soon.
STUBBED TOE: Another French shoe company is in trouble. Charles Jourdan, based in the town of Romans in southeastern France, last week said it would cut 295 employees, about a third of its workforce. The luxury shoe firm said it would eliminate 76 jobs in the United States, where it will shutter the 15 shops it had opened over the last two years. In a statement, Jourdan blamed the U.S. for the “majority” of its losses. Jourdan said it expects sales of about $82 million this year with “significant” losses. The company expects to break even next year. The announcement comes two months after Stephane Kélian, another French luxury shoe firm, declared it had entered the equivalent of Chapter 11 proceedings.
LEGAL WOES: Harry Winston Inc. has been sued by a former employee alleging libel and slander in a New York State court in Queens, according to a published report. According to the report, Max Pincione claimed that the famed jewelry firm owes him millions in unpaid commissions, and charges his former employer with ruining his reputation with allegations of theft. Officials at Harry Winston could not be reached for comment.