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Today in AMS: the NoCal perspective, AMS’s side of the liquidation story

The SF Chronicle finally picks up on the AMS bankruptcy story as Ilana DaBare probes the Northern California angle. That’s because many of Publishers Group West‘s clients – like McSweeney’s, Amber-Allen and New World Library – set up shot in and around the Bay area, and are still very much reeling from every development stemming from a bankruptcy that occurred at the “worst possible time.” Take tiny Parallax Press, a nonprofit Buddhist publisher in Berkeley with six employees, was owed $150,000 of its total annual sales of $850,000. “Revenues from the three most lucrative sales months of the year are not available to us,” said Travis Masch, Parallax’s publisher. “This has a tremendous financial impact on us.”

Meanwhile, the San Diego Union Tribune has much more about the liquidation petition by AMS creditors. And not surprisingly, AMS isn’t happy with the idea at all – as the company’s attorney, Russ Silberglied, accused the creditors of exacerbating the company’s problems by cutting off book shipments and making the warehouse stores deal with rival distribution companies. “(The creditors), together with our competitors, are talking to our customers and trying to circumvent us,” Silberglied said. “It seems like the very definition of the harm that’s going to befall us. That’s our business. You know, if we can’t perform, if we can’t sell books, we can’t perform our business.”

And Bud Leedom, who publishes the San Diego Stock Report, said it’s possible AMS still has a shot at surviving its current difficulties. “I’d like to think there’s more to the company than liquidation,” said Leedom. “On the other hand, AMS’s business is all about relationships and the strength of its customers. Those relationships may be untenable because the customers can’t get information about the strength of the company.”

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