October 27, 2021

There is a substantial doubt about the entity’s ability to continue as a going concern

Marcum Has Some Doubts About American Apparel’s Ability to Continue Selling Gold Lamé Leggings

Bad news for Dov Charney’s hipster retail paradise as Marcum – who replaced Deloitte last summer – has issued its auditor’s opinion with the language that no one likes to see.


But before we get to that, if you take a quick glance at the balance sheet you’ll see that the company barely has enough money to keep the lights on as their working capital is a measly $3 million (current assets of $216 million, current liabilities of $213 million). This shockingly bad number is mostly due to the $138 million in revolving credit facilities the company has included in its current liabilities. The company is also shows an accumulated deficit of over $73 million in its equity section. APP also bled over $32 million in cash from operations, according to its cash flow statement. All this bad news has lots of people talking about bankruptcy and that doesn’t touch the thirteen (that’s Gawker’s count, I only saw twelve) ongoing lawsuits against the company. Plus there’s the subpoena the company received from the U.S. Attorney General for SDNY last August over their auditor switcheroo.

We could go on and on but you get the pic. Here’s the final paragraph from Marcum’s opinion in APP’s 10-K:

The accompanying consolidated financial statements have been prepared assuming that the Company will continue as a going concern. As discussed in Note 1 to the consolidated financial statements, the Company has incurred a substantial loss from operations and had negative cash flow from operations for the year ended December 31, 2010. As a result of noncompliance with certain loan covenants, debt with carrying value of approximately $138.0 million at December 31, 2010, could be declared immediately due and payable. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the Company has minimal availability for additional borrowings from its existing credit facilities, which could result in the Company not having sufficient liquidity or minimum cash levels to operate its business. These conditions raise substantial doubt about the Company’s ability to continue as a going concern. Management’s plan in regard to these matters is also described in Note 1. The consolidated financial statements do not include any adjustments that might result from the outcome of these uncertainties.

Obviously the bad news is that investors are really spooked but the good news is that there could be a serious fire sale on hoodies and t-shirts in our future. Silver lining!

Who Would’ve Guessed Al Sharpton Knew Nothing About Accounting?

Presumably everyone but if you guessed that the Rev had the good sense to hire a crack-squad of debit & credit mavens to keep everything at National Action Network tip-top, you’d be sorely mistaken.

An accounting firm hired by Al Sharpton’s National Action Network found the civil-rights group in such financial disarray that it flunked its record-keeping — and may not even survive, The Post has learned.

The scathing critique was spelled out in a hard-hitting internal audit of NAN’s books, a copy of which was obtained by The Post.

“The organization has suffered recurring decreases in net assets — and has been dependent upon advances from related parties and the nonpayment of payroll tax obligations — to maintain continuity,” the firm KBL concluded in an April 2 audit of NAN’s 2008 financial records, the most recent available.

The audit, which was submitted to NAN’s board of directors, warned, “These circumstances create substantial doubt about the organization’s ability to continue.”

KBL said it was “unable to form an opinion” on the accuracy of NAN’s financial figures “because of inadequacies in the organization’s accounting records.”

Audit finds Sharpton’s nonprofit on brink [NYP]

Hey Media, Leave the Accounting To Us Mmmkay?

When Going Concern first launched a year ago, I know we heard more than a few chortles from the audience at the very idea of an accounting news site (or tabloid, depending on who you ask) because, really, how interesting can accounting be? Of course we’ve since learned that cube-dwellers, financial professionals, college kids and accounting enthusiasts are totally into what we do because no one was doing it before and someone had to.

It’s easy to forget that we’re not only utilizing this avenue to rip on obvious boneheads who try to manipulate our precious accounting (we’re talking to you, Patrick Byrne) and make fun of idiot celebrities who don’t pay their taxes but also to bring an accounting awareness to the world at large. It’s not all number-crunching and despite the stereotypes that we ourselves perpetuate, we’re also providing a service by making the obscure world of accounting digestible to non-accountants.

Which is pretty much the entire reason why other media outlets need to back off and leave the really super complicated reporting to us if they’re going to get into things they don’t understand.

Case in point, American Apparel.


The headline was really that American Apparel has been taking the active accounting defense stance lately, getting fired by Deloitte (hint if you’re not into the accounting: that doesn’t happen very often. The other way, perhaps, but the auditors very rarely get spooked and bail like that), rapidly bleeding precious capital and sort of “forgetting” to file important check-ins with the SEC. Oops. That’s where the doubt arises in “going concern doubt”.

In fairness to some media outlets, not everyone bumbled the headline. But for these two, we need to define the term “going concern.” This might be too hipster ironic, even for me.

Thanks, InvestorWords, I’m too lazy to type out this definition myself:

The idea that a company will continue to operate indefinitely, and will not go out of business and liquidate its assets. For this to happen, the company must be able to generate and/or raise enough resources to stay operational.

And then we can get into American Apparel’s future a ‘going concern’ via Marketplace and American Apparel Warns of ‘Going Concern’ via the Los Angeles Business Journal. Yeah, to clarify: that’s what we want, American Apparel has the doubt part to worry about, which was conveniently linked to directly from AA’s preliminary 10-Q to the SEC. See, it’s laid out there for you, all you have to do is read it.

Anyway, I’m not annoyed when people like Emily Chasan write stories about this stuff because she knows what she’s doing. Caleb gets away with it because he knows what he’s talking about. I stick to what I know – ripping on regulatory agencies and bitching about the general state of the industry – and pull it off. There are a ton more accounting writers I could name (Bill at CPA Success, Rick at CPA Trendlines, Francine at Re: the Auditors, Professor David Albrecht, Jim Peterson at Re:Balance, blah blah blah) but I would end up leaving out quite a few talents and I’d hate to offend anyone. Ha.

My point is that you don’t have to be one of them to get the story right. That’s all I’m saying.

The irony of this is not lost on me. I don’t wear American Apparel dammit but I half dress like this awful stereotypical hipster. Don’t ask me what to wear on CPA exam day, I stick to what I know.

Accounting News Roundup: Tax Freedom Day Is Nigh; Does the U.S. Government Need a Going Concern Opinion?; Google CFO Does Okay for Himself | 03.31.10

Tax Freedom Day 2010 Is April 9; Historically Massive Deficits Promise Later Tax Freedom in the Future [Tax Policy Blog]
This year April 9th marks, Tax Freedom Day. That’s 99 days of work for you to pay all your federal, state and local taxes for 2010. This is only one day later than last year but two weeks earlier than 2007, according to the Tax Policy Blog. However, TPB notes that the earlier tax freedom isn’t really much to get excited about.

Tax Freedom Day does not count the deficit even though deficits must eventually be financed. Since 1948, when Tax Freedom Day was first calculated, the difference between what governments are spending and what they’re collecting has never been as great as during 2009 and 2010. If Americans were required to pay for all government spending this year, including the $1.3 trillion federal budget deficit, they would be working until May 17 before they had earned enough to pay their taxes—an additional 38 days of work.

Expressing a Going Concern Doubt on the United States Government, Not According to GAAP [JDA]
Speaking of deficits, what does the U.S. Government’s deficit look like on a GAAP basis? Somewhere in the nabe of $4 trillion. But before you get all huffy about spendy Democrats, this is true bipartisanship at work. The deficit that includes social security and medicare was $11 trillion in 2004 and was all over the map throughout the aughts. Anyone thought of giving the U.S. a GCO?? AG notes that it’s a bit of problem when the government can’t even make things look rosy, “[W]hen even the government accounting makes things look bad (see: pensions), you really know you’ve got a problem on your hands.”

Google’s Schmidt Got $245,322; CFO Paid $24.7 Million [Bloomberg BusinessWeek]
The $24.7 million in total comp that Patrick Pichette received for ’09 was up from $7.63 million in ’08, the year he joined the company. Most of this year’s haul was from $10.9 mil in stock awards and $10.8 in stock options. His salary was only a measly $450k.