Circuit City Brand Fetches $14 Million in Bankruptcy Auction.

RICHMOND, May 13, 2009 -- A New York-based electronics company has agreed to buy Circuit City's trademark, domain name, and customer list for the sum of $14 million.

Experts previously estimated that the trademark and domain name would fetch between five and six million dollars.

The winning bidder Systemax, Inc. previously agreed to pay $6.5 , but the deal was not approved by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Kevin R. Huennekens who order an auction be held on May 11 to allow additional bidders. PC Mall, PC Connection and Ultimate Electronics participated in the auction. PC Mall and PC Connection both made initial bids of $7 million.

The deal with Systemax entails payments to Circuit City of $3 million over 30 months.

Ultimate Electronics is run by Mark J. Wattles, a Circuit City stockholder who spearheaded a proxy challenge last year in an effort to fire Circuit City's Board of Directors and upper-level management. Wattles owned 6.5% of the outstanding shares making him the third largest shareholder. The situation was resolved by allowing Wattles to handpick 3 directors on the board, one of whom was James A. Marcum who is now the acting president and CEO.

Systemax is a consumer electronics retailer that sells its products through websites, direct mail catalogs, relationship marketers, and retail stores in North America and Europe under the monikers of Tiger Direct, CompUSA, MISCO, and Global Industrial.

Tiger Direct was recently named as a defendant in a trademark infringement and dilution lawsuit brought by computer manufacturer Dell Inc. The complaint filed on behalf of Dell states Tiger Direct adopted without permission the marks "Dell SuperStore" and "Dell Monitor Shop." Dell further alleged that Tiger Direct represented itself as "a Dell representative." Dell also alleged that Tiger Direct falsely described some of its products for sale bearing the DELL mark were "Brand New Dell PCs at Blowout Prices." Tiger Direct is also accused of representing: older and discontinued computers as state of the art, used and or refurbished computer were new, and equipment as covered by a Dell warranty when a warranty did not exist or was provided by a third party.

Systemax Inc. was the same company that purchased the intellectual property of toppled electronic store CompUSA when it closed its doors in 2008.

The Circuit City mailing lists apparently include customer names, physical addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses. Systemax has agreed to provide Circuit City customers an opportunity to opt out from receiving marketing materials.

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