Brookstone sales fall 2.3 percent

Struggling Merrimack-based specialty retailer Brookstone announced its preliminary sales figures for the nine weeks ending Dec. 31, 2005, were down $199.6 million, or 2.3 percent, from the same period a year ago, despite divesting its unprofitable Gardeners Eden brand. Same-store sales also were down 8.1 percent for the same period.

There was some good news with direct-to-customer sales closing up $40 million, or 2.6 percent.

These results are unaudited and may be adjusted. The company plans to release final audited numbers on Feb. 22.

Michael Anthony, Brookstone president and chief executive officer, said, “We believe we are well positioned for 2006. We ended the year with a healthy cash position of approximately $75 million as of December 31, 2005, and no cash borrowings under our $100 million asset backed credit facility. We have a number of new product launches planned, some of which will be our exclusive launch of certain OSIM healthy lifestyle products.”

On Oct. 4, 2005, Brookstone Inc. was acquired through a merger transaction with Brookstone Acquisition Corp., a Delaware corporation formed by OSIM International Ltd and affiliates of J.W. Childs Equity Partners III, L.P. and Temasek (Private) Capital Limited. — CINDY KIBBE

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