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Lender sweeps Axium bank account

January 10 2008
A lender to Axium International Inc. swept the bank account of the company on Jan. 4, bankruptcy trustee Howard Ehrenberg said today. Ehrenberg, a Los Angeles attorney and court-appointed trustee, said the lender took $22 million "which left the company with no funds at all to honor its payroll operations or operate."

Axium, the parent of the Ensemble Chimes Global vendor management system, filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy on Jan. 8 in Los Angeles and ceased operations. Right now, work is under way to sell Axium's operations to other firms.

Chimes was the largest VMS provider in Staffing Industry Analysts' VMS Marketplace Profile (based on number of unique temporaries passing through the system in 4Q06). Axium purchased Chimes from Computer Horizons International Inc. in February 2007.

Ehrenberg said Axium borrowed $140 million from GoldenTree Asset Management, primarily to buy Chimes, but the creditor had concerns about Axium and swept the bank account. There was a buyer for Ensemble Chimes Global, but there appeared to be concerns Axium might not survive through a sale.

Ehrenberg is trustee for 39 of the 43 Axium bankruptcy cases, but not the ones related to Ensemble Chimes Global. Trustee for those cases, David Gill, could not be reached by press deadline. A representative of GoldenTree also could not be reached by deadline.

In addition to Ensemble Chimes Global, Axium processed payrolls and provided financing for the entertainment industry.

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