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Bad Times for Bunny: Playboy for Sale


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For sale (maybe): Playboy
The bottom line for Playboy Enterprises: Business is bad.

Business is so bad that the company that gave us the magazine, the interviews, Hugh Hefner, Playboy bunnies past and present (including Gloria Steinem) and, of course, the Playmate of the Month, would consider -- gasp! -- selling itself.

Calm down, calm down. Interim CEO Jerome Kern only said the company would be “willing to listen" to a sale offer. That doesn't mean it's going to happen.

ON SALE? Playboy magazine founder Hugh Hefner. Playboy Enterprises says it is open to discussions about an outright sale after posting a steep fourth-quarter loss.

Playboy Enterprises Inc, publisher of one of the world's best known adult magazines, said it would be open to discussions about an outright sale after posting a steep fourth- quarter loss. The company was hurt by US$157.2 million in restructuring and other one- time costs, as well as weaker-than-expected revenue.

Playboy, which has posted a net loss in each quarter of 2008, said it was also not averse to changes in the strategic direction of the flagship Playboy Magazine. The net loss for Playboy, which in recent months has seen a management shake-up including the resignation in December of longtime Chief Executive Christie Hefner, was US$145.7 million, or US$4.37 per share. This compares with a loss of US$1.1 million, or 3 cents a share, in the year-ago period.

Revenue declined to US$69.8 million from US$85.9 million, due in part to the sale of its television studio assets.

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