Stricken Aussie surfer blown out water after brand valued at zero

Michael Bow
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TROUBLED Australian surfwear maker Billabong yesterday said its flagship brand is now completely worthless.

The Australian listed company, which fell to a loss of A$859.5m (£496.6m) for the year ending June, wrote down the carrying value of the famous Billabong brand label from A$252m to zero. It also said its Von Zipper, Palmers and Element brands were worth nothing.

The company, once a stock market darling, has been crushed by a wall of debt taken out at the height of the pre-financial crisis buyout boom.

It is currently subject to a tug of war between two private equity-led consortiums hoping to restructure its debt pile.

“We are nearing the end of a long process that has caused distraction, impacted on staff morale and has been very costly,” Billabong chairman Ian Pollard said.

The total value of brands after the writedown fell to A$90.3m from $A383.4m a year earlier.