Summarized by Kent Larsen
Big Losses Prompt Talk Of Selling ZCMI
Salt Lake Tribune 1Sep99 L4
By Guy Boulton: Salt Lake Tribune
SALT LAKE CITY< UTAH -- After losses of almost $8.5 million last year, ZCMI may be for sale.
The company, which is 51 percent owned by the LDS Church, has been
struggling to return to profitability, and, says Chief Financial
Officer Keith Saunders, "We are just looking at alternatives now --
all strategic alternatives."
While Saunders declined to say that ZCMI is for sale, he did say that
any offers would be looked at. "We don't have any offers," but, he
said, the board would evaluate any proposals.
Some investors are convinced that some kind of change is imminent.
ZCMI's stock reached a five-year high of $15.50 a share August 26th,
suggesting that investors believe something will happen to improve
the company's prospects.
Any sale would require the approval of the LDS Church, because it
owns more than half the company. The department store was founded in
1868 as an attempt to put into practice the United Order doctrine.
Instead the firm grew into a department store chain, currently with
14 stores in Utah and Idaho.