News Feed Item

Clinton Group Commends Wet Seal for Focus, Financing and Future

NEW YORK, March 21, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Clinton Group, Inc. and its affiliates ("Clinton Group"), the owners of more than 7% of the outstanding common stock of The Wet Seal, Inc. ("Wet Seal")(NASDAQ: WTSL) sent a letter to the Chief Executive Officer of Wet Seal last night commending the Company for its recent actions, including its financing, in which Clinton Group was not involved.

"We believe Wet Seal is well positioned to emerge from the market-wide slowdown in teen apparel retailing significantly stronger than its competitors and better aligned with the teenage girl's shopping habits," said George E. Hall, Chief Executive Officer of Clinton Group. "With the financing announced yesterday, along with the recent Board changes, strategic moves on real estate and in the plus-sized market, and eCommerce and social media focus, Wet Seal is ahead of its competitors in executing on a fast-fashion, social-media centric retailing strategy that we believe is the wave off the future. We commend the management team for addressing the marketplace issues head on and for being proactive with this financing to ensure leadership for a long time to come."

The full text of the letter sent yesterday by the Clinton Group is below:

Clinton Group, Inc.

601 Lexington Avenue, 51st Floor

New York, NY 10022


March 20, 2014

Mr. John Goodman 
Chief Executive Officer 
The Wet Seal, Inc. 
26972 Burbank 
Foothill Ranch, CA 92610

RE:      Progress at Wet Seal

Dear Mr. Goodman:

I write on behalf of Clinton Group, Inc. and its various affiliates and associates ("Clinton Group"), which together own more than 7% of the outstanding stock of The Wet Seal, Inc. ("Wet Seal" or the "Company").

In light of today's earnings release, the announcement of strategic priorities, recent changes to the Board of Directors and the announcement of the Company's financing transaction, we write to commend you and the management team for taking the right steps in a very difficult macro environment for apparel retailers focused on teen clothing.

Although the recent results have not been laudable, we know they are primarily driven by market forces beyond the Company's control and that those forces will reverse in due course. Results among the mall-based peers have been weak, and in most cases worse. We also have taken note that most of your competitors are trying to move into the "fast-fashion" business, where the Company has long operated and has significant advantages, proprietary processes and seasoned infrastructure.

As Wet Seal's competitors aim to be more like Wet Seal, we know that Wet Seal itself continues to evolve and remain ahead of the pack. Indeed, we believe you have made many smart moves in last fifteen months -- improving merchandising, store operations, real estate strategy, technology, loyalty programs and the use of social media -- that will keep you ahead of the competition even as they attempt to emulate the Wet Seal fast fashion model.

Despite these many improvements in the Company's foundation and infrastructure, and the positioning of the Company in the "fast fashion" sector where all other teen retailers wish to be, the stock is down significantly since the summer of 2013. The price decline is unwarranted and will likely reverse sharply once the macro environment improves.

The $27 million financing announced tonight will surely give confidence to even the most skeptical supplier and positions the Company to expand aggressively its plus-sized business and its eCommerce and social media operations, further ensuring the Company is one of the market leaders on the other side of this market trough. With capital in hand, and a plan to expand the Company's market positioning, technology and social media marketing (with the help of the three new experienced Board members), we are confident in the Company's direction, capabilities and future.

Wet Seal stands ready to monetize the convergence of social media and eCommerce, and to extend its strategy profitably beyond the traditional mall-based retailing of its past. We are pleased with the steps management has made to address an altering landscape, including the building of outlet stores with a significant return on capital, an increased focus on plus-sized clothing and rationalizing stores in underperforming malls.

With some additional spending by teenage girls, which is inevitable, the Company will emerge from this market downturn stronger and better than it was when the stock was at $5.

While the immediate past performance has been disappointing, we commend you and the Board for facing the issues head-on and working proactively to position the Company well for the future.

We look forward to working with you constructively to ensure a bright future for Wet Seal and all its shareholders.



George E. Hall

Chief Executive Officer

About Clinton Group,Inc.

Clinton Group, Inc. is a diversified asset management firm that is a Registered Investment Advisor. The firm has been investing in global markets since its inception in 1991 with expertise that spans a wide range of investment styles and asset classes.


SOURCE Clinton Group, Inc.

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
@ThingsExpo has been named the Top 5 Most Influential M2M Brand by Onalytica in the ‘Machine to Machine: Top 100 Influencers and Brands.' Onalytica analyzed the online debate on M2M by looking at over 85,000 tweets to provide the most influential individuals and brands that drive the discussion. According to Onalytica the "analysis showed a very engaged community with a lot of interactive tweets. The M2M discussion seems to be more fragmented and driven by some of the major brands present in the...
Fact: storage performance problems have only gotten more complicated, as applications not only have become largely virtualized, but also have moved to cloud-based infrastructures. Storage performance in virtualized environments isn’t just about IOPS anymore. Instead, you need to guarantee performance for individual VMs, helping applications maintain performance as the number of VMs continues to go up in real time. In his session at Cloud Expo, Dhiraj Sehgal, Product and Marketing at Tintri, wil...
Enterprises have been using both Big Data and virtualization for years. Until recently, however, most enterprises have not combined the two. Big Data's demands for higher levels of performance, the ability to control quality-of-service (QoS), and the ability to adhere to SLAs have kept it on bare metal, apart from the modern data center cloud. With recent technology innovations, we've seen the advantages of bare metal erode to such a degree that the enhanced flexibility and reduced costs that cl...
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, will discuss how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team a...
Without lifecycle traceability and visibility across the tool chain, stakeholders from Planning-to-Ops have limited insight and answers to who, what, when, why and how across the DevOps lifecycle. This impacts the ability to deliver high quality software at the needed velocity to drive positive business outcomes. In his general session at @DevOpsSummit at 19th Cloud Expo, Eric Robertson, General Manager at CollabNet, will discuss how customers are able to achieve a level of transparency that e...
As software becomes more and more complex, we, as software developers, have been splitting up our code into smaller and smaller components. This is also true for the environment in which we run our code: going from bare metal, to VMs to the modern-day Cloud Native world of containers, schedulers and microservices. While we have figured out how to run containerized applications in the cloud using schedulers, we've yet to come up with a good solution to bridge the gap between getting your conta...
Personalization has long been the holy grail of marketing. Simply stated, communicate the most relevant offer to the right person and you will increase sales. To achieve this, you must understand the individual. Consequently, digital marketers developed many ways to gather and leverage customer information to deliver targeted experiences. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Lou Casal, Founder and Principal Consultant at Practicala, discussed how the Internet of Things (IoT) has accelerated our abil...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Streamlyzer will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Streamlyzer is a powerful analytics for video streaming service that enables video streaming providers to monitor and analyze QoE (Quality-of-Experience) from end-user devices in real time.
You have great SaaS business app ideas. You want to turn your idea quickly into a functional and engaging proof of concept. You need to be able to modify it to meet customers' needs, and you need to deliver a complete and secure SaaS application. How could you achieve all the above and yet avoid unforeseen IT requirements that add unnecessary cost and complexity? You also want your app to be responsive in any device at any time. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Mark Allen, General Manager of...
SYS-CON Events announced today that 910Telecom will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Housed in the classic Denver Gas & Electric Building, 910 15th St., 910Telecom is a carrier-neutral telecom hotel located in the heart of Denver. Adjacent to CenturyLink, AT&T, and Denver Main, 910Telecom offers connectivity to all major carriers, Internet service providers, Internet backbones and ...
Established in 1998, Calsoft is a leading software product engineering Services Company specializing in Storage, Networking, Virtualization and Cloud business verticals. Calsoft provides End-to-End Product Development, Quality Assurance Sustenance, Solution Engineering and Professional Services expertise to assist customers in achieving their product development and business goals. The company's deep domain knowledge of Storage, Virtualization, Networking and Cloud verticals helps in delivering ...
Intelligent machines are here. Robots, self-driving cars, drones, bots and many IoT devices are becoming smarter with Machine Learning. In her session at @ThingsExpo, Sudha Jamthe, CEO of IoTDisruptions.com, will discuss the next wave of business disruption at the junction of IoT and AI, impacting many industries and set to change our lives, work and world as we know it.
The IoT industry is now at a crossroads, between the fast-paced innovation of technologies and the pending mass adoption by global enterprises. The complexity of combining rapidly evolving technologies and the need to establish practices for market acceleration pose a strong challenge to global enterprises as well as IoT vendors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Clark Smith, senior product manager for Numerex, will discuss how Numerex, as an experienced, established IoT provider, has embraced a ...
DevOps theory promotes a culture of continuous improvement built on collaboration, empowerment, systems thinking, and feedback loops. But how do you collaborate effectively across the traditional silos? How can you make decisions without system-wide visibility? How can you see the whole system when it is spread across teams and locations? How do you close feedback loops across teams and activities delivering complex multi-tier, cloud, container, serverless, and/or API-based services?