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Short news...3/31/04

MARCH 31, 2004 -- ISG published a report from the Miami Herald that seems to have been picked up from The Oregonian. Dean Stoyer, Nike Golf Communications, sent this e-mail to ISG: "The Oregonian reporter, Helen Jung, accurately reported what she was told for her March 28 story; however, the information she received from Nike Golf was inaccurate. We have NO current plans to introduce equipment in the US that falls outside the USGA limits." On another note, Nike Golf and Tiger Woods will give golf fans the opportunity to own a piece of sports history in two weeks when unique replicas of Woods' "Ignite" hats, worn only at the 2004 Masters Championship, are autographed and auctioned at eBay. For the first and only time, Woods' hats will bear the "Ignite" logo, representative of Nike Golf's new-generation driver, the Ignite, which debuts at golf shops and golf specialty stores nationally on tomorrow. An exact replica of the hat that Woods wears each day during the Masters Championship (April 8-11) will be signed by him and posted for auction the next day. There will be no other replicas of Woods' Ignite hat from the 2004 Masters Championship in existence. The first hat, representative of the hat Woods wears during the first round, will be up for auction beginning Friday, April 9. The next three hats will be put up for auction on April 10, 11 and 12, respectively. All four individual auctions will conclude on Monday, April 19. Nike Golf will donate 100% of the proceeds from the auction to the Tiger Woods Foundation.

adidas-Salomon is launching a tender offer to purchase the remaining 20.8% of the common shares of Salomon & Taylor Made Co., Ltd. (Japan) not already owned by the adidas-Salomon Group. The offer, which is being made through the Group’s Salomon S.A. subsidiary, has the full backing of the Salomon & Taylor Made Co., Ltd. board of directors, which passed a resolution of support. Herbert Hainer, COB/CEO, adidas-Salomon, stated: "Achieving our goal of full ownership of Salomon & Taylor Made Co., Ltd. will enable us to raise operational efficiency, and will facilitate expansion of our business in Japan, to the long-term benefit of employees, retailers and consumers. At the same time, this tender offer represents an opportunity for shareholders to realize a substantial premium to the market value of their investment." The tender offer is scheduled to begin on April 1, 2004 and will continue for a period of 43 days, closing on May 13, 2004. Salomon S.A., which owns 79.2% of the common shares of Salomon & Taylor Made Co., Ltd., will offer to buy all remaining outstanding common shares (3,228,400 shares) at a price of 1,200 yen per share. This represents a premium of 31.1% over yesterday’s closing price, and a premium of 45.5% over the average closing price of the past six months. Salomon & Taylor Made Co., Ltd. Directors who are shareholders have expressed their intention to tender their shares. Following completion of the tender offer and any further steps, it is expected that shares of Salomon & Taylor Made Co., Ltd. will be deregistered from JASDAQ.

Mountainsmith and parent company, 105 Meridien, opened a new corporate production office in Hong Kong. The office will facilitate management of the company's Asian-based factories and suppliers. Development, sourcing, and production for Mountainsmith's growing business, as well as the business of 105 Meridien's OEM partners, will be coordinated from the new office. According to Greg Thomsen, president of Mountainsmith, "2004 is Mountainsmith's 25th anniversary and we are celebrating with banner growth. Our new Hong Kong office is part of a long-term expansion plan and confirmation of our commitment to both the Mountainsmith brand and to our OEM partners. We are focused on offering new products at the most competitive prices and with the best materials and workmanship available. The Hong Kong office will help us achieve these goals."

Everlast is seeking a swimwear licensee for the Everlast brand. As part of an agreement, the potential licensee would receive all of the swimwear endorsement rights from Gary Hall, Jr. as well. Everlast just signed Olympic swimmer Hall as an endorser. He is a two-time Olympian, eight-time Olympic medalist (four Gold, three Silver and one Bronze) and an American record holder. This approach to the market will give a swimwear licensee a method to compete with the largest swimwear programs in the US, the company said.

SnowSports Industries America said the SIA.05 SnowSports Show is officially sold out. The SIA.05 SnowSports Show will be held at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, January 24-27, 2005. To date more than 321,000 square feet has been sold with over 360 exhibitors on tap to showcase more than 750 brands. SIA has already secured space contracts from 18 new exhibitors including Patagonia, The North Face, Yakima, Garmont and NHS/Santa Cruz. "The sold out status marks the first time in the history of the Show that the floor space is 100% occupied 10 months out," said Scott Mellin, SIA director of sales and marketing. SIA.05 sponsorship sales and event commitments are also tracking to reach record levels. The SIA.05 Show will offer new elements for retailers and exhibitors including two new entrance locations for the alpine hardgoods and softgoods halls, enhanced and expanded showcase exhibits, VIP lounges and Internet services.

The Revenue, Price and Merchandise Optimization for Retailers $ummit will take place June 28-30, 2004 at The Rio in Las Vegas. It will offer answers to the most important optimization issues in the retail industry today, through best practice in-depth retail case studies, retail world leaders, expert retail analysts and optimization professionals' insight. The issues include: Why retail optimization is right for your business; retail revenue management; pricing strategies for markdown optimization and promotion planning; merchandise optimization operational implications of optimization Retail analysts and optimization professionals will come together to offer presentations, case studies, panel debates and workshops. For more information, go to: http://www.firstconf.com/retail/info.shtml

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