COLUMBUS, Ohio, Sept. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Safelite Glass Corp. (D.B.A. Safelite AutoGlass) today announced that its financial restructuring plan has been approved by the US Bankruptcy Judge in Wilmington, DE. Business continued as usual during the court-protected restructuring, and the company exceeded expected profit levels for the first quarter ended June 30, 2000. "We are extremely gratified to have received strong support from our associates, our clients, and our vendors during this challenging period," said John Barlow, Safelite President and CEO. "That we were able to maintain customer satisfaction ratings of better than 98% is a testament to the dedication of our associates." The company's financial restructuring includes the conversion of $317 million in long term debt to equity. The converted debt was held by the company's banks and bondholders. More than 95% of these creditors supported the restructuring plan. With the plan approved, Safelite is well positioned to move forward with plans to grow its share of the $3.2 billion auto glass business. The conversion of one half of the company's long-term debt to equity has dramatically improved Safelite's financial position. Interest and principal payments on the long term debt will be decreased significantly, and cash flow will increase. The restructuring will allow the company to continue its aggressive investment in technology and claims processing services for its insurance and fleet customers. Recently, Safelite embarked on several new initiatives that will propel the company's growth through 2000 and beyond: * Mobile Pro operations in new markets provide high quality mobile auto glass service in response to customer's demands for convenience * Service AutoGlass provides a new wholesale distribution channel for OE-equivalent windshield products produced by the company's two manufacturing plants * The Total Customer Solution (TCS) allows insurance and fleet clients to outsource their auto glass claims processing for improved efficiency and savings * Repair Medics repair windshield chips and cracks up to 6" long, saving money for consumers and Safelite's insurance clients Moving forward, the company's plans include efforts to leverage technology solutions to provide expanded geographical coverage and claims processing services for insurance and fleet companies. The company expects that the remaining conditions of the Chapter 11 will be fulfilled within the next several weeks, and the company will officially emerge from bankruptcy at that time. Privately held Safelite Glass Corp. is the leader in the $3.2 billion auto glass repair and replacement industry. Safelite is the only auto glass company with representation in all 50 states, serving more than 80% of the US population. The company's 6,200 associates provide auto glass repair and replacement solutions for more than 2 million customers annually. For more information, please visit the company's website at www.safelite.com .
SOURCE Safelite AutoGlass