International Male Catalogue Retailer Sold

San Diego County Business Editor

International Male, the "forward fashion" clothing catalogue retailer founded 15 years ago by a former advertising salesman, was sold Monday to Horn & Hardart, a New York-based mail-order and fast-food firm.

The sale price of the all-cash deal--scheduled to be officially announced today--was not disclosed.

This year, International Male will generate about $26 million in sales, about 70% of which will come from its mail-order operation, according to Gene Burkard, the company's president and founder. The firm boasts a catalogue circulation of about 2 million and has two retail outlets in San Diego County and one in Los Angeles.

Horn & Hardart, which last year reported about $356 million in sales and a net loss of $7.2 million, was "looking (to acquire) a company on the West Coast," said Burkard, "and we wanted to have a company with more money and more clout." Burkard will remain president of International Male, which will become a subsidiary of the New York firm.

"I wanted to combine our creativity and wanted to sell while I was on top and going up," said Burkard.

Horn & Hardart's chairman and chief executive, Barry Florescue, would not comment on the sale. The company has a mail-order operation, a real estate division and a food service operation, which includes the Bojangles chain of restaurants.

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