Week 3 Finc 495





The Lotto Case (or Hitting the Jackpot)

Allen B. Atkins, Roxanne Stell, & Larry Watkins 3 - 5

American Apparel, Inc. – Saved from Bankruptcy but can it sustain?

Dr Anupam Mehta 6 - 20

A Model for Running an Undergraduate Business-Focused Case Competition

Jill M. Bale, Jimmy Senteza, & Toby A. White 21 - 36

Midwest Bancshares, Inc.

Heather Muehling, & Edward C. Lawrence 37 - 53

Creating Equity Indices: A Case Exercise

Judson W. Russell, & Christopher Brockman 54 - 66

Netflix: DVD-by-Mail or Online Streaming?

Rick Long, Inchul Suh, & Toby White 67 - 82

Strategic Approach of Business Valuation

Dr. Rishma Vedd, & Nataliya Yassinski 83 - 95

Did Right Case Take a Wrong Turn?

Janet E. Mosebach, & Diana R. Franz 96 - 100

Quandary at National Health Company

N. Ahadiat, & D. Rice 101 - 107

Interest Charge Domestic International Sales Corporations – The remaining ex-

porter tax benefit

Matthew Yost, & Chris Bjornson 108 - 122

Generating Financial Statements using QuickBooks: A Group Project in Financial


Christopher Aquino, & Lei Han 123 - 133

Investing in a Brewpub: A Capital Budgeting Analysis

Elizabeth Webb Cooper 134 - 137

New Mexico National Bank, a bank with growth in mind (A)

Dr. James F. Cotter 138 - 154

A Case Study: Ethical Implications of friendly takeovers: A Financial Manager’s


Barbara Tarasovich 155 - 165

Drug Revolution/Grace Pharmaceuticals Joint Venture

Karen M. Hogan, & Gerard T. Olson 166 - 170

From Jail Time to Swagger, Romance and Machoism: Changing the Image of the


Mary Catherine Colley 171 - 185


The Lotto Case (Hitting the Jackpot)

Allen B. Atkins, Roxanne Stell, & Larry Watkins

Bob, Chad and Dylan had been dream-

ing of this day for the past six years; ever

since they first met in an introductory

economics course in college. For several

years they had been pooling their money

and buying Arizona Lottery tickets

dreaming that one day they would win

big. They realized that the lottery was

considered by many to be a voluntary

tax on the statistically challenged. But

miraculously they now sat at their favor-

ite local “watering hole” holding the

winning ticket that meant they would

split “The Pick” jackpot of $6 million.

What a great feeling! Now they just

needed to decide if they wanted to take

their winnings as a lump sum now or to

be paid over the next twenty in install-


Bob had been a political science major in

college but things hadn’t worked out as

he anticipated when he was a student.

He had entered the job market at what

looked now to be the bottom of the eco-

nomic downturn following the housing

crisis in the U.S. Bob believes he did not

start his job search soon enough and

found suitable openings virtually nonex-

istent. He was currently working part-

time at an organic farm and still living at

home which cramped his style consider-

ably. He has $150,000 in college related

loans (7% interest rate) which he cannot

service based on his annual taxable in-

come of $15,000. His share of the jackpot

would allow him to be debt free and

change his life for the better without


Chad had been more fortunate than Bob.

He had applied himself in college and

earned a master of accounting degree

with an emphasis in taxation. After

graduation he immediately went to

work for one of the international ac-

counting firms and was now earning a

taxable income of $100,000 in spite of the

economic issues facing his friend Bob

and the country as a whole. He too had

debt but not from student loans. Chad

had purchased a very nice home in An-

them, Arizona for approximately 50% of

what it had sold for three years earlier

when built. He had a $250,000 mortgage

on the home, at a 4% interest rate, which

he saw little reason to pay off since he

anticipated significant inflation in the

near future.

Of the three friends Dylan was by far the

most successful. Dylan had majored in

finance and had excelled. When he

graduated, although he had several at-

tractive offers in the financial services

industry, he decided to go into the fami-

ly business. The company which his fa-

ther and uncle had started nearly 50

years ago had done amazingly well in

the downturn and since he was the only

child/nephew they were rewarding him

handsomely. He had been reluctant to

tell Bob but he was on track to receive to-

tal compensation (including bonuses)

that yielded a taxable income of $300,000

this year. Unlike his friend Bob, Dylan

was frugal and had taken on zero debt.

He was pleased with the trio’s good for-

tune but he didn’t think the windfall

would change his life all that much.

A few days later when the euphoria of

winning was subsiding the three friends

met again at the same establishment. All


were obviously in good spirits and were

looking forward to presenting their win-

ning ticket to Arizona Lottery officials.

Chad started the conversation by telling

Bob and Dylan that he had taken the ini-

tiative of doing some basic research on

how “The Pick” worked and what the

payout options were. Bob, proud of his

forethought, produced an article he had

saved years earlier from the Arizona Dai-

ly Star with the headline “Lump-sum

Lotto Payout is Best, Experts Say.” Bob

excitedly told his buddies that the ex-

perts were local CPAs and that clearly

the lump-sum payout was “the way to

go.” Dylan said he wanted to hear what

Chad had found out since he had gone

to the effort of looking into the specifics.

Chad (being a tax accountant) had pre-

pared a summary of his research which


A percentage of the proceeds from the sale of

Lotto tickets are allocated to a prize pool.

The size of the Jackpot that is prominently

advertised, six million dollars in this in-

stance, is actually only an estimate. The ad-

vertised amount is the sum of the estimated

annuity1 payments, without consideration of

the time value of money, which Lotto officials

believe can be purchased from the prize pool.

If the winner chooses the annuity payout

multiple insurance companies submit bids.

Officials award the bid to the insurance

company that offers the largest annual pay-

ments in return for the prize pool amount.

The insurance company with the best bid

typically offers a rate that is near the long-

1 The term annuity is actually a misnomer. Since

the payments are made by the insurance compa-

ny at the beginning of each of twenty periods it

is an annuity due.

term U.S. Treasury Bonds rate (currently

3%). If the winner chooses the Lump Sum

payout they simply receive the prize pool

amount; the amount that would have been

used to buy the annuity.

After reading the summary Bob said he

didn’t see how this related to the deci-

sion that had to be made since he didn’t

see anything that changed the preferred

option being that the lump-sum payout

is best. Chad acknowledged that Bob

was probably correct but he still wanted

to “run the numbers” and suggested that

Bob and Dylan should do the same.

Chad reminded them that they needed

to consider the tax consequences of the

payout schema and then provided the

following schedule of federal income tax

rates and reminded them that the state

tax rate was an additional 5%.

Bob rolled his eyes but said he would get

right on it. Dylan thanked Chad for the

information and they agreed to meet

again tomorrow to decide on the best

course of action.


1. Is there necessarily one best deci-

sion for the group regarding the

payout options? If so what is it

and why?

2. What might be the reason(s) that

Chad does not want to pay off his

debt? Do you concur?

3. Prepare a personal analysis of the

payout options for Bob, Chad and

Dylan. Designate the preferred

option for each individual and

explain why.

4. What non-financial factors might

enter into the decision for the




Atkins, Allen B. and Edward A. Dyl,

“The LOTTO Jackpot: Should You Take

the Lump Sum or the Annuity?” Finan-

cial Practice and Education, Vol. 5, No. 2,

Fall/Winter, 1995, 107-111.


Allen B. Atkins, Ph.D., Professor of Fi-

nance, Northern Arizona University, al-

[email protected]

Roxanne Stell, Ph.D., Professor of Mar-

keting, Northern Arizona University,

[email protected]

Larry Watkins, Ph.D., CPA, Professor of

Accounting, Northern Arizona Universi-

ty, [email protected]

Taxable Income Bracket* Federal Tax Rate

$0 to 8,500$ 10%

8,500 to 34,500 15%

34,500 to 83,600 25%

83,600 to 174,400 28%

174,400 to 379,150 33%

379,150 to and over 35%

* Assumes individual filing status


American Apparel, Inc. – Saved from Bankruptcy but can it sustain? Dr Anupam Mehta


American Apparel, Inc, which was once the fastest growing retailer of America, is

now striving to save its bleeding bottom line. With the possible bankruptcy looming

on the American Apparel heads and huge pile of loans to pay, it is battling to get on

the operating profits necessary for its very existence. The present case depicts the

struggle of founder and CEO Dov Charney to revive the company with his recovery

mechanism, inventory management, strengthening online & offline sales and crush-

ing operating expenses to fight against the quarter by quarter losses, negative EPS

and decreasing margins. This case gives an opportunity to the students to analyze

and evaluate the financially troubled company’s performance along with applying

the Altman’s Z score. At the end of the case students need to decide: whether the

CEO Dov Charney’s recovery plan is able to improve the financial performance of

the company? What are the trends of growth and earnings? Does the company have

sufficient liquidity and profitability to meet the requirements of massive debt and

gather refinance options? Does the company survive bankruptcy?

Keywords: American Apparel, Bankruptcy, Z score, Profitability, Retails sector, fi-

nancial performance, Ratio analysis


With a cumulative loss of $41 million for

the first three quarters in 2012, Ameri-

can Apparel, once the “Label of the Year:

American Apparel”, “The fashion sensa-

tion of 2008” (The Guardian, 2008) is

struggling to stay afloat, after going into

deep financial troubles in 2009 and was

on the verge of bankruptcy in 2011. The

company’s net profit slipped to $1 mil-

lion in 2009 from $15 million in 2007 and

down to annual net losses of $86 million

& $39 millions in 2010 and 2011 respec-

tively. Dov Charney, the CEO and

Founder of American Apparel, who built

the company from a small retailer to a

massive vertically integrated manufac-

turer, distributor and retailer, is now

burdened with massive debt load, falling

share prices and decreasing margins. Till

now, Dov Charney’s efforts have been

able to sustain the company in spite of

losses and pull up the investors for its

sinking company, while enhancing the

sales from $533 million in 2010 to $547

million in 2011 and further building up

to $444 million (first three quarters in

2012) with effective inventory manage-

ment and expansion plans. But, continu-

ous losses pressurized him to improve

the profitability and deliver the financial

results or it will run out of options soon.


Figure 1 Stock Performance for 2006-2011

(Source: American Apparel, Inc., 2011)

Company background

As of July 31, 2012, American Apparel

had approximately 10,000 employees

and operated 251 retail stores in 20 coun-

tries, including the United States, Cana-

da, Mexico, Brazil, United Kingdom, Ire-

land, Austria, Belgium, France,

Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Spain,

Sweden, Switzerland, Australia, Japan,

South Korea and China. American Ap-

parel operates a global e-commerce site

that serves over 60 countries worldwide

at http://www.americanapparel.net. In

addition, American Apparel also oper-

ates a leading wholesale business that

supplies high quality T-shirts and other

casual wear to distributors and screen

printers. It is also one of the few clothing

companies exporting "Made in the USA"

goods. The American Apparel is head-

quartered in Downtown, Los Angeles,

where, from a single building they con-

trol the dyeing, finishing, designing,

sewing, cutting, marketing and distribu-

tion of the company's product. CEO Dov

is very passionate about the company,

and involved in every stage of manufac-

turing. He is known for the sexual con-

troversies and various sexual lawsuits.

The CEO Dov is also, famous for his use

of provocative models for advertise-

ments. Apart from these controversies,

Dov is having a very strong fashion

sense. In 2004, he was named Ernst &

Young's Entrepreneur of the Year and

Apparel Magazine's Man of the Year

(www.americanapparel.net, 1997).

American Apparel’s Mission statement

Company’s Long-term goal: to become

the #1 destination for basics – be the first

name that fashion-conscious consumers

think of for t-shirts, sweatpants, under-

wear, socks, and other basic apparel.

(www.americanapparel.net., n.d.)

The rise of American Apparel

The CEO Dov Charney with his vertical

integration business model converted

the company to America’s fastest retailer

in 2008. During the year, the company

made wide spread expansion and

launched stores across the globe with

new launches in Australia, Belgium,

Brazil, China, and Spain. The company

expanded 78 net store openings and 3

store moves. The company got strong

comparable store sales results: 22%,


Achieved EBITDA of $70.1 million and

EPS of $0.33 by significantly expanding

the manufacturing operations. The com-

pany was basking on the glory of signifi-

cant store growth and strong compara-

ble store sales performance. By the end

of 2008, the company has 260 stores in 19

countries, nearly 10,000 employees and

$545 million in revenues and a five year

compound annual growth rate of 46%

(American Apparel, Inc., 2008). The

company has a biggest competitive ad-

vantage of bringing the fashion changes

quickly, as the entire process is governed

in one building right from, cloth, cutting,

and delivery of final product. By the end

of 2008, the company was able to build a

unique brand which was fashionable

and low on prices.

Major setback to the profitability

In 2009, despite the company’s ability to

build a unique brand and having built a

wide network of stores across the globe,

the company started struggling to sus-

tain. Although, year 2008 was good in

terms of revenues and over all expan-

sion, beginning 2009, the company faced

several difficulties. The long run probe

into the employment of illegal immi-

grants, and forced termination of bulk of

its employees, brutally affected the per-

formance of the company. Immigration

crackdown forced American Apparel to

fire 1,800 workers, most of whom are La-

tino immigrants (Daily 49ER, 2009). As a

result, the company’s profits reduced

from $14 million in 2008 to $1 million in

2009, with EPS reduced from 0.33$ to

0.02$ in just one year and the operating

margins decreased from 6.6% to 4.4%.

The forced terminations of several em-

ployees impacted the performance of

2010 as well.

"We suffered the after-effects of a major

labor disruption resulting from an im-

migration intervention in 2009. The dis-

ruption of our 2010 production schedule

resulted in significantly higher produc-

tion costs per unit and late deliveries of

products to our stores and to our whole-

sale clients," said acting president Tom

Casey. "In addition, we encountered ex-

traordinarily challenging world-wide

economic conditions. We also experi-

enced higher yarn and fabric costs in the

second half of 2010" (American Apparel,

Inc., 2011).

Liquidity crisis and production losses

A significant decrease in the net cash

flow from operating activities, was ob-

served from December 31, 2009 ($45.2

million) to December 31, 2010 (- $32 mil-

lion). Meanwhile, the revenue during the

period fell nearly 5% as compared to

previous year, with total retail sales fell

just over 10%, wholesales sales dropped

6%, while online consumer sales shrunk

by 4.4% (Proactive investors, 2009). In

2011 things became worse, when the

company, with a long term mission of

becoming the number one destination

for garments, started to feel the difficulty

even to stay afloat. In its annual report

company specified that its operations are

at risk and raised substantial doubt that

the company may able to continue as a

going concern. As the crisis grew, the

company desperately looked for new in-


“If the company is not able to timely,

successfully or efficiently implement the

strategies that the company is pursuing

to improve its operating performance

and financial position, obtain alternative

sources of capital or otherwise meet its

liquidity needs, the company may need


to voluntarily seek protection under

Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy

Code,” DealBook (2011).

Recovery plan

On the blink of bankruptcy, the CEO

Dov Charney secured $14.9 million in

additional financing and gave life line to

the company. Dov, in his upbeat spirits,

made an extensive plan for the recovery

of the company through improving the

operating performance, over hauling of

the entire process of inventory manage-

ment and severely trying to crush the

cost while focusing on getting the re-

quired EBIT quarter by quarter in order

to meet the requirements of heavy debt

that it has taken.

According to Dov Charney, "We contin-

ue to make meaningful progress in im-

proving inventory efficiency lower car-

rying costs and reduce working capital

requirements over the long-term. These

efforts, together with other operating

performance improvements will assist in

our near-term refinancing efforts" (Inves-

tors.americanapparel.net, 2012).

The expansion and renewed focus on

sales enhancements resulted into total

net sales increase by 15% to $56.3 million

in December 2011. For the same period,

comparable store sales increased 12%

and wholesale net sales increased 25%.

The Gross operating margin as well im-


“Our sales exceeded plan in all channels

and we saw good progress in our whole-

sale channel across a broad spectrum of

customers. Our retail sales increases

were also broad based with notably

large increases in the US, in all Asian

markets, and in Australia. Our product

is resonating well with our customers

both in stores and online. During the

quarter we opened three new stores in

the UK, including one in Westfield, Lon-

don and two store-in-store locations at

the venerable Selfridges department

store chain. We are excited about our

progress in 2011 and expect to build on

our recent successes in the coming year”

said Dov Charney (American Apparel,

Inc., 2012).

The strategy of building both online and

offline stores was continued in 2012 as

well. In April 2012, it launched a new

online store,


serving Hong Kong, while continued to

build brand offline and online.

Figure 2: Recent Stock Performance

(Source: Yahoo Finance, 2012)


Figure 3: Quarterly results

(Source: Google Finance, 2012)

Burdened under Debt

In spite of some improvements, the

overall financial figures were still nega-

tive, making CEO Dov Charney to fur-

ther increase debt or refinance, else it

would go bankrupt. This time again Dov

was able to arrange the investors and

managed to get the major loans extend-

ed/refinanced till 2015 During July 2012,

the company announced it has replaced

its existing $75 million senior credit facil-

ity that was due to expire in July 2012

with a three year $80 million Senior

Credit Facility also extended the maturi-

ty date of the Second Lien Loan by two

years to December 31, 2015


“I’ve never seen a company get so many

lifelines. Dov must be very charming,”

said the retail analyst. (Retailgeeks.com,


The growing liabilities, the high interest

rates and inability to generate profits

and once again resorting to the lenders

for further loan, resulted into a total lia-

bilities increasing to $ 319 million at the

end of the third quarter of 2012 as com-

pared to $13,877 in equity. But it seems

Dov, is unshattered with the loans, all he

wants to somehow keep the company

floating. He believes that once the com-

pany is able to hit the numbers, the in-

terest payment can be made easily.

Concern and challenges

“There’s obviously a level of sexiness

and excitement that (Charney) portrays,

and passion for the brand” retail con-

sultant said. “If the numbers aren’t that

positive, as they’re not, investors are

probably buying a vision and a promise

that, things will get better”

(Retailgeeks.com, 2012). Although the ef-

forts of Dov Charney have managed to

get investors till now, some analysts be-

lieve that the company has done noth-

ing, except buying some time from its

latest financing. With huge liabilities, the

company has to show the results in

numbers otherwise it may have to face

the bankruptcy. No wonder, the compa-

ny is having tough time to save its bleed-

ing bottom line. With the sword of liabil-

ities dangling on Dov Charney’s head,

he fears, whether the recovery plan will

able to enhance the profitability of the

company? What are the key financial in-

dicators that need to be further empha-

sized, in order to pay back the liabilities,

and generate further refinance, if re-

quired? Having survived on the blink of

bankruptcy, would American Apparel

be able to pass through the crisis or is it a

sure short candidate of business failure?


Specific Assignment Questions

1. Has the recovery plan of Dov

Charney able to improve the financial

performance of the company?

2. Do you think company can sur-

vive? Apply the Atman Z –score to fur-

ther strengthen your conclusions.

3. How good are the operating mar-

gins and EBIT of the company?

Notes: 1 Altman’s Z score

“Z” Score Component Definitions

1. X1=Working capital/ total Assets

2. X2=Retained earnings / Total As-


3. X3=EBIT/Total Assets

4. X4=Equity value/ total book debt

5. X5=Sales/Total Assets

Z score is calculated to find out the fu-

ture viability and chances of bankruptcy

Z = 1.2X1 + 1.4X2 + 3.3X3 + 0.6X4 + 1.0X5

Altman defined a “problematic area”

which is between 1.81 and 2.99. Firms,

with z-scores within this range, are con-

sidered uncertain about credit risk and

considered marginal cases to be watched

with attention. Firms with Z scores be-

low 1.81 indicate failed firms. Although,

the cut-off point was set at 2.675, Altman

advocates using the lower bound of the

zone-of-ignorance (1.81) as a more realis-

tic cutoff Z-Score. So if Z < 1.81, then the

company has a high probability of de-

fault. Altman, E., (1968)

When using this model Altman conclud-


Z-score < 1.81 = high probability of bank-


Z-score > 3.0 = low probability of bank-


Z-score 1.81- 3.0 = indeterminate. (Al-

Rawi, K. et al., 2008)


Al- Rawi, K. et al. (2008) The Use of Alt-

man Equation For Bankruptcy Predic-

tion In An Industrial Firm (Case

Study), International Business & Eco-

nomics Research Journal, Volume 7,

(Number 7), p.118.

Altman, E., (1968) Financial Ratios, Dis-

criminant Analysis and the Prediction

of Corporate Bankruptcy, Journal of

Finance, September.

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