In the midst of Chapter 11 proceedings and company reorganization, Fedders Corp. of Liberty Corners, N.J., has sold its residential HVAC business - including the Fedders, Air Temp, and Emerson Quiet Kool brands - to Airwell Air Conditioning BV of Guyancourt, France, for approximately $13.25 million. According to The Associated Press (AP), the sale was approved by Judge Kevin Shannon at a hearing in the Wilmington, Delaware U.S. Bankruptcy Court. AP also reported that Fedders would have had to shut its U.S. HVAC business if it hadn’t found a buyer, due to liquidity issues.

Airwell Air Conditioning BV will conduct business as Airwell-Fedders North America Inc. The company holds 100 percent of Fedders’ residential HVAC business, including current inventory, trademarks, technology, and related assets. Operating under its parent company, Elco Holdings Ltd., headquartered in Tel Aviv, Israel, Airwell is a primary European manufacturer and distributor with facilities in Italy, Israel, China, and Argentina.

“Airwell is looking forward to completing the current Fedders products range, offering a comprehensive line of the highest-quality heating and air conditioning products at a fair price to the North American market,” said Ulrich Bornkessel, CEO of the Airwell Group.

“Our goal is to take 60-plus years of production, marketing, and innovative product development to successfully penetrate the North American market in the same manner as we have done in other markets around the world, by leveraging Fedders’ excellent brand and professional distribution network.”

The company has appointed David Pearson as general manager of Airwell Fedders North America Inc.

Fedders continues to sell its business units in an effort to pay off creditors the approximately $68 million in secured debt, $155 million in bond debt, and $53.6 million in trade debt. According to the AP, however, creditors have predicted that asset sales will fall far short of what the company needs in order to pay off its debts.

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Publication date:03/31/2008