Friday, March 16, 2001

Wilkinson details debts of $418M

The Associated Press

        LEXINGTON — Former Gov. Wallace Wilkinson claims liabilities of $418.4 million and assets of $86.8 million in information filed with his personal bankruptcy case.

        The largest debt not already revealed in court filings is $50.6 million he owes to Wallace's Bookstores Inc., his college textbook company. The filing Wednesday does not indicate why he owes the company that amount.

        Prominent among his assets are stocks valued at $57 million, most of them his ownership interest in the college bookstore business;, an online bookstore business; and other Wilkinson enterprises.

        Mr. Wilkinson and two of his businesses, Wallace's Bookstore and Wallace's Book Co., are attempting to reorganize under court protection from creditors. The companies are expected to disclose their debts and assets in April.

        Among his assets, Mr. Wilkinson lists farm property in Mercer County valued at $2 million; commercial property in Lexington worth $1.9 million; homes in Lexington and Naples, Fla. valued at a total of $2.7 million; and two boats valued at a total of $2.1 million.

    Some of the assets and liabilities listed by former Gov. Wallace Wilkinson in bankruptcy filings.
    Mr. Wilkinson reported $7 million in real property, including a $1,932,491 home in Naples, Fla., and a Lexington home valued at $886,000.
    He listed three Mercedes automobiles with a total value of $143,875. Boats listed are a 1994 Sea Ray valued at $500,000 and a 1998 Pershing valued at $1,650,000. He also listed a boat slip in Florida with a value of $190,000.
    Mr. Wilkinson claimed just under $58 million in stock in several companies, most of them private. He claimed 100 percent ownership of Wilkinson Group Inc., Wilkinson Flying Service Inc., Park Plaza Associates Inc., Wilkinson Energy Co. Inc., Peddler Inc., SDI International Inc., WGW Realty Co. Inc. and WEGE & Co. Inc. Other holdings include: 118,599 shares of Wallace's Bookstores Inc. (now also in Chapter 11 bankruptcy) and 3,781,605 shares of Inc. Among shares in public companies listed are: 1,488 of Coca-Cola, 2,760 of Banc One, 837 of Columbia/HCA Healthcare and 100 of Electronic Data Systems.
Stock Pledged as Security
    In the past year, Mr. Wilkinson reported he made these pledges of stock to obtain loans: 77,366 of Wallace's Bookstores Inc. and 3,288,060 of Inc. to The United Co. for $98.3 million in loans.
        He also lists accounts receivable from his sons, Glenn and Andrew, of $5.5 million; $6.7 million from Wilkinson Flying Service, a charter air service he owns; and $3.3 million from Wilkinson Group Inc., another of his companies, which owns an office building in Lexington.

        Mr. Wilkinson claimed income from various sources of almost $4.9 million for 1999 and almost $3.6 million for 2000. To date this year he claimed $305,462 in income.

        Mr. Wilkinson said his assets were estimated conservatively and the actual value could be as high as $315 million, depending on the market value of his real estate, businesses and investments.

        Mr. Wilkinson was forced into bankruptcy reorganization after nine of his creditors, led by The Union Co., filed an involuntary Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition Feb. 5 that could have forced the sale of Mr. Wilkinson's assets.

        The creditors said Mr. Wilkinson had borrowed large amounts to fund his college-textbook business but had refused to give them the financial data they needed to determine how the money was being used.

        Mr. Wilkinson converted the Chapter 7 filing to a Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization. Chapter 11 provides bankruptcy-court protection while a debtor develops a plan to repay creditors. Wallace's Bookstores and Wallace's Book Co. followed Wilkinson into Chapter 11 on Feb. 28.

        Those two companies have not yet filed an account of assets and liabilities. It is certain, though, that their finances are closely entwined with Mr. Wilkinson's personal finances. In his filing on Wednesday he listed Wallace's Bookstores Inc. and his wife, Martha, as co-debtors for many of his debts.

        In Wednesday's filing, Mr. Wilkinson hinted that he may take some legal action of his own against his creditors. Among his assets, he listed “potential claims in an unknown amount against lenders” for damage they may have caused to the value of the stock of the bookstore business and

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- Wilkinson details debts of $418M
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