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Evine Live is Out; ShopHQ Returns

Company also cuts $15 million in “overhead costs,” installs new CFO, and plans Spanish language shopping channel.

Evine Live is Out; ShopHQ Returns

Eden Prairie-based Evine Live Inc. home shopping channel has been a troubled company for as long as anyone can remember. The company’s latest financial results – first quarter numbers released on Wednesday – won’t do much to change that perception.

The company’s sales for the quarter, which ended May 4, were $131.5 million – a steep 16 percent drop compared to the same period a year ago. Evine also reported a net loss of $21 million for the first quarter, significantly larger than the $3 million net loss in the first quarter of 2018.

“In terms of our first quarter, 2019 performance, there is no other way to say it – our performance was poor,” said Tim Peterman, Evine’s new CEO, in a statement. Peterman has only been CEO since May 2.

But beyond the numbers, Evine announced a lot of news.

  • The company is planning to drop the Evine name in the second quarter and replace with a brand that it previously used: ShopHQ. According to the company’s statement: “ShopHQ is easier to recognize for existing television retailing customers.” The company summarized customer response to the Evine name: “It was not positive.”
  • The company also announced eliminating $15 million in “annual overhead costs” by cutting 20 percent of its fulltime staffers and the “permanent elimination” of 11 senior executive positions.
  • Evine disclosed plans to launch a “Spanish language television shopping brand” called LaVenta in the first quarter of 2020. According to the company’s statement: “LaVenta will be produced in Miami by a standalone Latin management team.”
  • Evine plans to rebrand its existing Evine Too channel to Shop Bulldog, focused on “men’s merchandise and services,” in the fourth quarter of 2019.
  • Evine announced that Michael Porter, previously vice president of finance and investor relations, has become the company’s new CFO effective Tuesday. Porter replaces Diana Purcel, who had been named CFO in April 2018. Purcel had actually replaced Peterman as Evine’s CFO in his previous stint with the company.
  • The company hired Jean Sabatier to a new role: executive vice president and chief commerce officer. Sabatier previously worked for the company from 2008 to 2017. His first day in the new job was Tuesday.

In 2013 activist investors targeted the company, then known as ValueVision Media Inc., agitating for big changes. In June 2014 the activists prevailed in a proxy fight and installed a new CEO, Mark Bozek.

Bozek was leading the company when it changed both the company’s name and its ShopHQ network brand to Evine Live.

But plans for Bozek to lead a big turnaround didn’t pan out. He lasted just 19 months at the helm before resigning in February 2016. His shoes were filled by Bob Rosenblatt, who had been the company’s chairman of the board, until Peterman was tapped as the new leader.

The company’s stock last closed above a dollar per share on Nov. 27, 2018, at a price of $1.05 per share. The next day the stock plummeted 37 percent in response to the company’s third quarter 2018 earnings announcement. The stock closed at 45 cents per share on Tuesday and was nominally down slightly in Wednesday trading.

For fiscal year 2018, Evine reported $596.6 million in sales – down 8 percent from the year before – and a net loss of $22.2 million.

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