Finlay Finally Has Finale

About a month after it filed a long-awaited Chapter 11, Finlay is liquidating its assets, including the Bailey Banks & Biddle chain and the highly regarded chains Carlyle and Co. and Congress Jewelers.

Liquidator Gordon Bros. was the high bidder at the Sept. 23 auction for Finlay’s assets. The company bid 85.75 percent on asset inventory, estimated at $116 million at press time.

Gordon Bros. is also running the going-out-of-business sales for the 58 stores Finlay announced it was closing before its Chapter 11 filing, which means it will run going-out-of-business sales for the entire 104-store chain.

It’s possible some stores will be bought once those sales are complete, one source said. Among the bidders in the auction was a consortium that included the Cohen family, which owned the Carlyle chain before it was sold to Finlay.

Finlay’s problems were no secret in the industry. Its stock has been trading at two cents, and prior to the filing, it publicly acknowledged doubts about its ability to function as a going concern. In fiscal year 2008, it lost over $100 million.