Direct Marketing Expert Brad Richdale Preps Plan to Return Stokely USA to Profitability



Jul 21, 1997, 01:00 ET from National Direct Corp.

    DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., July 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Multi-millionaire direct
 marketing expert Brad Richdale is preparing a multi-faceted proposal for the
 Board of Directors of Stokely USA Inc. (Nasdaq:   STKY) to restore profitability
 to the corporation.
     "I have met with Steve Theobald, Stokely's president and chief
 executive officer, and we concur that the company's immediate priority is
 to develop more private label accounts," said Richdale.
     Richdale, who bought an 8 percent stake (916,700 shares) in Stokely
 USA about three weeks ago, is interested in building shareholder equity in
 the Oconomowoc, Wis.-based company, a leading U.S. producer of canned
 vegetables.
     Stokely USA has lost money four of the past five years, including a
 net loss of $20.9 million in the fiscal year that ended March 31.  The most
 recent loss included a one-time charge of $13.5 million for corporate
 restructuring and writing off certain deferred debt costs.
     "My detailed plan will be sent to board members within a week,"
 said Richdale, who built an $80 million-a-year direct marketing business on
 a $20,000 investment in only 12 months.
     "I have a specific strategy to position Stokely in a unique,
 compelling, proprietary manner that is more beneficial for current and
 prospective accounts currently being approached by the company's broker
 sales network."
     Richdale, 39, said he is willing to provide a direct mail strategy
 that would induce more deals, interest and accounts for Stokely.
     "I have a great deal of experience in positioning tight margin
 wholesale accounts in a unique and compelling manner, and the increase in
 private label business and securing existing business would help shore up
 revenues for the company," he said.
     Richdale said he has discussed with business associates and
 investors the endorsement of new products that would be non-perishable,
 high-margin fitness offerings that could utilize the Stokely name without
 additional plant retooling or capital expenditure.
     "The company should consider leveraging its name and create a
 Stokely Fitness Division to receive royalty income for the use of its brand
 name and valued reputation garnered over the years," the direct marketing
 expert said.
     "Stokely needs to methodically ascertain potential niche markets of
 high-profit, consumable 'signature products.'  This would require a
 cautious approach so the company can avoid its past history of financial
 difficulty.  These products also could be tested for consumer interest
 prior to undergoing any shelf space, retail marketing or capital
 commitment."
     Richdale also has suggested utilizing direct response mail and
 quantifiable direct marketing techniques to ensure that any expansion of
 retail sell through is accomplished scientifically and is cost effective.
     A self-made multi-millionaire, Richdale's ads, marketing strategies
 and direct mail efforts are utilized by major companies and entrepreneurs
 worldwide. He is the author of an acclaimed book, Think Like a Millionaire.
 His television show, "Creating Wealth," with NFL Hall of Fame quarterback
 Fran Tarkenton as co-host, has been rated No. 1 for 38 weeks by the
 Infomercial Monitoring Service in Broomall, Pa.
     Stokely processes, markets and sells a broad range of vegetables
 under customer private labels and under the Stokely's Finest(R) and
 Stokely's Gold(TM) labels and other brand labels through retail, food
 service and industrial distribution channels. Headquartered in Oconomowoc,
 Wis., Stokely operates seven processing facilities in the Midwest.
 
 

SOURCE National Direct Corp.
    DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., July 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Multi-millionaire direct
 marketing expert Brad Richdale is preparing a multi-faceted proposal for the
 Board of Directors of Stokely USA Inc. (Nasdaq:   STKY) to restore profitability
 to the corporation.
     "I have met with Steve Theobald, Stokely's president and chief
 executive officer, and we concur that the company's immediate priority is
 to develop more private label accounts," said Richdale.
     Richdale, who bought an 8 percent stake (916,700 shares) in Stokely
 USA about three weeks ago, is interested in building shareholder equity in
 the Oconomowoc, Wis.-based company, a leading U.S. producer of canned
 vegetables.
     Stokely USA has lost money four of the past five years, including a
 net loss of $20.9 million in the fiscal year that ended March 31.  The most
 recent loss included a one-time charge of $13.5 million for corporate
 restructuring and writing off certain deferred debt costs.
     "My detailed plan will be sent to board members within a week,"
 said Richdale, who built an $80 million-a-year direct marketing business on
 a $20,000 investment in only 12 months.
     "I have a specific strategy to position Stokely in a unique,
 compelling, proprietary manner that is more beneficial for current and
 prospective accounts currently being approached by the company's broker
 sales network."
     Richdale, 39, said he is willing to provide a direct mail strategy
 that would induce more deals, interest and accounts for Stokely.
     "I have a great deal of experience in positioning tight margin
 wholesale accounts in a unique and compelling manner, and the increase in
 private label business and securing existing business would help shore up
 revenues for the company," he said.
     Richdale said he has discussed with business associates and
 investors the endorsement of new products that would be non-perishable,
 high-margin fitness offerings that could utilize the Stokely name without
 additional plant retooling or capital expenditure.
     "The company should consider leveraging its name and create a
 Stokely Fitness Division to receive royalty income for the use of its brand
 name and valued reputation garnered over the years," the direct marketing
 expert said.
     "Stokely needs to methodically ascertain potential niche markets of
 high-profit, consumable 'signature products.'  This would require a
 cautious approach so the company can avoid its past history of financial
 difficulty.  These products also could be tested for consumer interest
 prior to undergoing any shelf space, retail marketing or capital
 commitment."
     Richdale also has suggested utilizing direct response mail and
 quantifiable direct marketing techniques to ensure that any expansion of
 retail sell through is accomplished scientifically and is cost effective.
     A self-made multi-millionaire, Richdale's ads, marketing strategies
 and direct mail efforts are utilized by major companies and entrepreneurs
 worldwide. He is the author of an acclaimed book, Think Like a Millionaire.
 His television show, "Creating Wealth," with NFL Hall of Fame quarterback
 Fran Tarkenton as co-host, has been rated No. 1 for 38 weeks by the
 Infomercial Monitoring Service in Broomall, Pa.
     Stokely processes, markets and sells a broad range of vegetables
 under customer private labels and under the Stokely's Finest(R) and
 Stokely's Gold(TM) labels and other brand labels through retail, food
 service and industrial distribution channels. Headquartered in Oconomowoc,
 Wis., Stokely operates seven processing facilities in the Midwest.
 
 SOURCE  National Direct Corp.