Ship’s log for the HearUSA Enterprise,March-May, 2011.
March 17, 2011: Siemens moves to exercise its rights as a secured creditor to take over HearUSA in an SEC petition containing the reassuring note that it “plans to continue operating HearUSA’s business, but … make significant changes to make them more profitable…”
Comment: It’s about time.
March 16-19, 2011: Siemens USA President Brian Kinnerk is fired and replaced by acting CEO Scott Davis.
Comment: One insider says “Brian Kinnerk lost his job for doing the right thing. It was courageous for a supplier to sue a retailer.” Another insider says the firing had “nothing to do with the HearUSA situation.” Most likely, it was a mix of both, with HearUSA scapegoating Kinnerk to make itself look good (see next).
March 17, 2011: Arcadia Capital Opportunity Master Fund (Florida), owner of 10% owner of HearUSA stock, publicly rejoices at the news of Kinnerk’s “long overdue” departure, which it heralds as a “first step to Improving relationship With HearUSA.” After trashing Siemens for its “destructive strategy …[of ]…hostile and malicious actions against a loyal, long-time business partner,” Arcadia proceeds to urge Siemens as the “natural buyer” to make a “fair and full offer.”
Comment: Sounds like the HearUSA PR machine. It also sounds like Arcadia is scared to death that its stock is going in the ditch.
March 17, 2011: HearUSA files a temporary restraining order against Siemens in the NY State Supreme Court, calling Siemens “overbearing and inappropriate” in its attempts to “seize” the company.
Comment: CEO Hansbrough remains at the helm of the ship. Stock sinks to 48.5 cents/share.
April 8, 2011: CEO Steven Hanbrough sells 10,753 (7%) of his shares.
Comment: Or maybe he’s left the helm and put the President in charge….
April 8, 2011: President Gino Chouinord sells 5,974 (7%) of his shares.
Comment: Or maybe Steve and Gino have left the helm and put the CFO in charge ….
April 8, 2011: CFO Frank Punal sells 3584 (12%) of his stock.
Comment: Is anybody left on deck? Do these guys know something we don’t? Has the SEC noticed all those Form 4s today?
April 22, 2011. 10% Owner Arcadia sells 23,000 of its 4.5 million shares.
Comment: Arcadia missed the April 8th memo.
May 9, 2011. HearUSA & HEARx are busy debuting their Official Twitter Page.
Comment: Woohoo. Impeccable timing — Arcadia must be relieved.
May 13, 2011. Tweet: “Happy Friday 13th friends. Any weekend plans?”
Comment: Are they kidding? These guys definitely know something we don’t.
May 16, 2011: Hear-USA says it is out of money and files for bankruptcy in Florida, AMEX stops the stock’s trading at $0.34/share.
Comment: The ship has sunk.
May 17, 2011. Tweet: “How are you celebrating May is Better Hearing Month?”
Comment: Better than you are.
May 17, 2001: CFO Frank Punal signs notification to the SEC (Form 12b-25) that HearUSA’s quarterly report could not be filed on time and that “Losses are expected to substantially increase for the recording of goodwill impairment losses. “
Comment: And that’s all he wrote.
May 16, 2011: HearUSA says it plans to stay open and continue meeting payroll.
Comment: Good! Better Tweet that to employees.
May 19, 2011: HearUSA says it may do mass layoffs.
Comment: OK forget the Tweet.