Nasdaq drops Atlantic Beverage from its main list


An article about Atlantic Beverage Co. Inc. in yesterday's editions incorrectly reported the company's annual revenues. Sales for the company in 1994 were $24.6 million.

The Sun regrets the error.

Failure to grow as fast as anticipated two years ago forced the removal of Atlantic Beverage Co. Inc. from the Nasdaq

National Market list of stocks and its transfer to the exchange's Small Cap Market.

The action, which takes effect today, came after three profitless years for the Arbutus-based soft drink distributor, which has seen its stock drop by more than two-thirds since going public in November 1993, with an initial price of $6.50 a share. Yesterday, the stock closed at $1.875 a share, down 12.5 cents.

The company, which has 105 employees, did not have a sufficient net worth two years ago to qualify for Nasdaq's national list, according to William E. O'Leary, president and chief executive officer of Atlantic. But the National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotation System made an exception, anticipating that the company's net worth would reach the required level in the coming years, Mr. O'Leary said.

But the company's net tangible assets -- assets minus goodwill and liabilities -- failed to reach the threshold of $4 million. It's about $3 million, Mr. O'Leary said.

Even with the change, Nasdaq will continue to carry the stock, and investors will be able to buy and sell the stock as they have done before. "It's transparent to the shareholders and the investors," Mr. O'Leary said.

But the stock price may not be as easily found. Many newspapers carry the national list only and not the Small Cap list. "It's less visibility," said Marc D. Beauchamp, a Nasdaq spokesman.

In an effort to boost its stock price, Atlantic recently repurchased 375,432 shares of stock from T. Row Price Associates Inc. for $375,000.

With annual sales of $4.9 million last year, Atlantic distributes several brands of juices, natural sodas, bottled waters and iced teas.

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