Other items: Controller to quit for job in California; Air Force puts in $609 million order; Accounting errors could go back years at A.I.G. ...

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Spiegel has won bankruptcy-court approval of the statement detailing its reorganization plan, moving it a step closer to emerging from Chapter 11 protection.

Judge Cornelius Blackshear approved the disclosure statement after a hearing Tuesday in Manhattan, enabling the company to send its plan out to creditors for their vote.

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Blackshear’s order sets a May 13 deadline for creditors to cast their ballots on the plan. The court will consider approving the plan at a May 25 confirmation hearing. Objections to confirmation are due May 13.

The plan, supported by the creditor committee, would allow Spiegel to reorganize around its Redmond-based Eddie Bauer division, giving creditors 100 percent of the stock in the reorganized company, Eddie Bauer Holdings.

Downers Grove, Ill.-based Spiegel filed for Chapter 11 protection in March 2003.


Controller to quit for job in California

Maurice Hebert, Safeco’s senior vice president and controller, has resigned effective April 11.

Hebert has accepted a position as controller of a publicly traded managed health-care company in Southern California, according to a Safeco filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Hebert joined Safeco in October 2003 as controller, overseeing the insurer’s financial reporting.


Air Force puts in $609 million order

Boeing received a $609 million contract from the Air Force to provide guided missile kits.

Using satellite-based guidance systems, the strap-on kits will be used on 500-, 1,000- and 2,000-pound bombs dropped from airplanes, the Department of Defense said yesterday.

The contract for 30,072 kits will be completed by February 2007 with 75 percent of production taking place at Boeing’s St. Louis unit and 25 percent being done by subcontractor Honeywell International in Minneapolis.

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Accounting errors could go back years

American International Group yesterday acknowledged accounting errors that could stretch back 14 years, including its treatment of a deal with Berkshire Hathaway that is at the center of federal and state investigations.

AIG’s sweeping disclosures — including the possibility it may be forced to reduce the value of the company by $1.7 billion or 2 percent — came just days after Chairman Maurice “Hank” Greenberg said he would retire after almost 40 years of leading the insurance powerhouse.

AIG’s disclosures follow a meeting earlier this week between its attorneys and representatives from the Justice Department, the Securities and Exchange Commission and New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer’s office.

The company plans to delay filing its 2004 annual financial report — its second delay — until late next month while it continues the review.

Compiled from Dow Jones/The Associated Press, Seattle Times business staff, Bloomberg News

and Reuters