Whitehall Gets New Financing, Will Get New Inventory

Troubled Whitehall Jewelers will get new financing from Prentice Capital Management, including a $30 million secured bridge loan. In addition, the 387-store retailer has entered into an agreement with key vendors that will facilitate the purchase of fresh inventory for the holiday selling season.

It also commenced an arbitration proceeding relating to Beryl Raff’s decision to forgo a position with Whitehall.

In another recent announcement, the company said it would not comment on rumors it was for sale.

JCK New Delhi Show Set for 2006 Launch

JCK Shows is launching JCK New Delhi next September at the Pragati Maidan Expo in New Delhi. Dave Bonaparte, vice president of The JCK Shows, said the show was being “launched in response to huge interest in the Indian market from exhibitors.”

“The jewelry industry represents one of India’s great success stories both domestically and internationally in recent years,” said Rajan Sharma, managing director of Inter Ads, which is co-sponsoring the show.

Friedman’s to Exit Chapter 11

Friedman’s has received court approval to exit Chapter 11 by the end of the year. The Savannah, Ga.–based jewelry retailer’s amended plan and disclosure statement now have the consent and support of the bankruptcy court and creditor’s committee. In addition, the company will receive a revolving credit facility of $125 million from New York’s CIT Group when it leaves Chapter 11.

Jeweler Sentenced for Misleading IRS

Benny Ray Wadsworth, 64, of Pocahontas, Ark., was sentenced to 10 months in prison and fined $25,000 for impeding IRS agents trying to investigate his taxes, according to the Arkansas Democrat Gazette. Wadsworth pleaded guilty in June to the charges. Prosecutors said Wadsworth falsely claimed to have a canoe rental business that offset the income from his jewelry business, the newspaper said.

Blue Nile Goes to Britain

Blue Nile has announced the launch of a Web site in the United Kingdom— The launch marks Blue Nile’s first overseas expansion and second international launch, following one in Canada earlier this year.

South Carolina Jeweler Dies

George Kenneth Satterfield Sr., 73, owner of Jewelry Warehouse, a four-store chain first established in West Columbia, S.C., died in September. Satterfield founded Jewelry Warehouse in 1977 from a wholesale business after he was severely burned in an accident. Satterfield worked for 25 years with the Miss South Carolina pageant.