NEW YORK — Finlay Enterprises Inc. raised $36 million from the sale of 2.04 million shares at $19 a share in a secondary offering.
The operator of leased jewelry departments in department stores will use the proceeds for working capital, repayment of debt or other general corporate purposes.
Rohit M. Desai, one of the original investors when the business was founded in 1984, also sold 953,029 shares, raising $17 million. Desai is chairman of Desai Capital Management Inc.
Finlay operates 1,085 leased departments currently, including the acquisition in early October of 139 sites from Zale Corp. for $66 million. The acquisition gave Finlay its first departments in Mercantile Stores, Marshall Field’s and Parisian.
May Department Stores accounts for about 47 percent of sales, and Federated Department Store, about 21 percent. Other large leased areas are in Galeries Lafayette, Belk, Carson Pirie Scott, Bon-Ton and Elder Beerman.
In the half ended Aug. 2, Finlay narrowed its losses to $5.6 million from $5.9 million a year earlier. Sales rose 5.5 percent to $282.6 million.

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