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Old 21-07-2005, 17:36   #1
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SAILNET Message Board

Current information & news regarding the "Sailnet" Message Board.

The headline at Sailnet ‘Home’ http://www.sailnet.com/index.cfm reads:
Excuse Us While We Make Some Changes.
Checkout is temporarily disabled.

Telephone calls (1-800-234-3220) go unanswered, with the admonition to not leave messages - instead send e-mail to: jmilligan@sailnet.com
My e-mails have been unanswered for 36 hours.
SailNet, 3864 Leeds Avenue, Charleston SC, 29405, USA

Sailnet - Dot Bomb?
http://groups-beta.google.com/group/...61fac5815f24b9
Photos:
http://sport.journal99.com/group//al...s.ocean?118218

SailNet was launched in 1994 by Sam and Cheryl Boyle. Sailnet was sold to an “investor group” several years ago, and although the Message Boards have remained vibrantly active, the Sales & Service enterprises have declined to the point where it’s suspected that the business may be defunct.

In January of 2005 Sam & Cheryl launched SAILjazz, a web-site with with over 125 Forums.
You can visit their new website at: http://www.sailjazz.com/


Under Construction ...
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Old 21-07-2005, 21:20   #2
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Just been able to access sailnet.
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Old 22-07-2005, 11:58   #3
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From: Cheryl Boyle" cboyle@sailjazz.com
Date: Thu, 21 Jul 2005 19:53:45 -0400
In response to the recent flood of emails, I've posted a statement to the
web site addressing all the issues raised. If you're interested you can
read the statement at http://www.sailjazz.com/statement.php


Statement

I would like to take this opportunity to address several issues that have come up in the last several days. We've received questions about our business plans, fielded inquiries about SailNet, and been the recipients of untruthful and mean-spirited allegations leveled against us.

Since our departure from SailNet in Nov/Dec 2004, we've had no involvement with that company at all. We have no more information about their current or future plans than any other outsider. It would be unfair and inappropriate for us to speak about things we know nothing about.

A few people have expressed a concern about the longevity of SAILjazz and whether we can support the community over the long haul. The answer is “Yes”. We've done this before! People tend to forget that our last venture thrived for five years before we entered the retail side of the market. Some would probably like more detail, but we are unwilling to publicize more at this time. Our experience has taught us that the competition never misses an opportunity to mimic our best efforts. Given the number of sharks circling the waters at the moment, we see no reason to give them any more information than necessary. It should suffice to note that we are already publishing original content, have operational lists, and have significant resource development efforts underway. All of which is running on top of a pretty mature infrastructure. Not to repeat ourselves, but we have done this before…

Some have asked if we're going to open a new store. We do not believe that community and retail are a good mix. There is an inherent conflict in delivering unbiased community information and services when you're worried about retail sales and marketing issues. It's tough to be a retailer when you're worrying about how to best serve the community issues. Our experience led us to view it as an “either/or” choice.

Our passion has always been for the community side. We've always believed in putting that first so we've decided to concentrate solely on building the best sailing community. On the retail side, there are lots of choices out there. Our job is to help you find and evaluate those options so you get the most out of your sailing budget. Note that our first Dock Talk Feature, Rate Your Retailer, will help you do just that! Rate Your Retailer should be on-line within another few days.

Our Terms of Service/Copyrights on the site/lists have also generated some questions. Everyone should acknowledge that almost every site has exactly the same policy. Some are more obvious, some more difficult to find, and the language varies a tiny bit, but the intent is always the same. No one wants to spend the energy creating a community resource which some predator can copy and then post as their own. And, yes we have seen that. At the same time, we don't want our policy to cause undue concern. Please note that it prohibits “commercial use” and does not restrict private use in any way. We are committed to putting any list generated content back into the public domain should we ever be unable to support the lists.

Last, we need to address a particularly nasty email that has circulated around parts of the internet. An anonymous poster placed a message on a long-time competitor's web forum. This person alleged that we were personally responsible for the problems at SailNet and that we were “facing embezzlement charges”. We have no interest in debating what happened at SailNet. Everyone has 20/20 hindsight, and they are all entitled to their own opinions… meaning there's no point to debating the varied and individual perceptions that people may have. We know that we always tried to the best of our ability to act in the best interests of as many stakeholders as possible.

With that said, let us be clear in stating that we emphatically deny any allegation of wrongdoing. We cannot understand the motive behind such slander. The tragedy here is that a nameless character assassin was able to get wide circulation promoting a false accusation. That's the dark side of our Internet today.

We wish everyone in the sailing community our best! There is a tempest out there at the moment, but this will pass. People need to take a deep breath, exhale slowly and get on with enjoying their passion for life and sailing. Trust me; I've had lots of experience at needing to do just that!

Fair Winds,
Cheryl Boyle
Co-Founder
SAILjazz
© 2005, The Boyle Company, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
SAILjazz 636-G Longpoint Road, #104 Mount Pleasant, SC 29464 USA
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Old 22-07-2005, 13:25   #4
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Charleston Reporter Investigating Sailnet ~ Watch for News ...
Kyle Stock covers technology & business for the Charleston Post and Courier .
He can be reached at (843) 937-5763 or at kstock@postandcourier.com
The Post and Courier: http://charleston.net/default.aspx
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Old 22-07-2005, 16:45   #5
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From “twofer”, as posted on the Sailnet Message Board:

From the Charleston Post and Courier this morning:

http://www.charleston.net/business/

SailNet appears to be on rocks
Customers who placed orders with dot-com report that it's left them adrift

BY KYLE STOCK
Of The Post and Courier Staff

SailNet, an online retailer of boating goods that once employed about 200 people, has run into rough waters.

While it's not clear if the North Charleston-based dot-com has sunk, the company has stopped taking orders and is not responding to phone calls or e-mails. Its Leeds Avenue offices are shut with a "closed" sign on the door.

Meanwhile, sailing message boards on the Internet are filling up with postings from irate customers who say they have been overcharged or have not received orders they placed.

The company now has an unsatisfactory record with the South Carolina Better Business Bureau, which received two complaints about SailNet this month. The unsatisfactory record reflects the company's failure to respond to at least one of the complaints, according to the bureau.

James Reddington, a 47-year-old sailing buff in Connecticut, said he ordered $184 worth of goods from the company in mid-May. Reddington received a few of the items, but he is still waiting for a $100 halyard, and his attempts to contact the company have gone unanswered for three weeks. Now, he's seeking restitution with his credit card company.

"I'm certainly not happy, but I guess this is what happens with businesses sometimes," Reddington said.

SailNet launched in 1994 with entrepreneurs Sam and Cheryl Boyle at the helm. Originally looking for a way to connect sailing buffs, the Boyles took a business tack with SailNet when they moved from Detroit to Charleston in 1999.

The next year, they sold a controlling stake in the company to IDG Ventures, a San Francisco-based venture capital firm that has more than $1 billion invested worldwide. They also drummed up funding from New Millennium Partners, another San Francisco-based venture capital firm, and private investors.

Flush with cash, SailNet bought Johnson Sales Inc., a Florida-based business that manufactured and sold sails, cushions and other boat accessories. SailNet also acquired Boatscape.com, a Boston-based competitor. At the same time, SailNet hired a crew of programmers, sales staff and craftsmen.

At its peak, the dot-com had about 60 employees in North Charleston and another 140 or so making and shipping boat gear from St. Petersburg, Fla.

SailNet became a much-celebrated local phenomenon in those heady days. The startup won Web site accolades from Forbes magazine, and Boyle spoke on a chamber of commerce panel about "the secrets of high-tech success."

But the fickle winds of commerce can fade quickly -- especially in the dot-com world -- and SailNet was soon struggling to make headway. Management started jettisoning employees.

"It was fast growth, race to the top and spend lots of money to get there," said Randy Draftz, who spent almost six years creating and managing SailNet's online store. "But the bubble burst before it got there, and it's been in survival mode ever since."

Bill Wright, who handled SailNet's manufacturing from St. Petersburg, said the company simply tried to grow too fast.

Wright used to work at Johnson Sales, the company SailNet bought in 2000, and was later hired by the Boyles.

Wright said he left SailNet when it was struggling in 2002, buying a bunch of the outfit's assets to launch a separate store.

"There were a lot of consultants involved and a lot of people who thought they were smarter than everybody here," Wright said. "There was just too much money floating around."

In December, Sam and Cheryl Boyle and the controlling investors came to a parting of the ways.

Reached at their Mount Pleasant home Thursday, the Boyles denied that the company had been mismanaged. They said SailNet was a victim of market forces.

"It was predicated on a market that totally evaporated," Sam Boyle said. "It's easy to play Tuesday-morning quarterback, especially when you have a videotape of the game."

The couple declined to comment on the company's finances. When asked if SailNet ever turned a profit, Sam Boyle said, "I think it's safe to say that it's a very tough business to be in."

IDG Ventures did not return phone calls or e-mails Thursday afternoon. John Rublaitus, who the Boyles said is now chief executive officer of the company, also did not return phone calls or e-mails. A woman who described herself as Rublaitus' wife said SailNet "is kind of closed down these days" but declined to comment further.

The SailNet parking lot has been empty for about three weeks, according to Jillian Hollingsworth, who works at Hospice of Charleston next door.

She has seen several people pound on the door and peer in the windows, she said.

The Boyles incorporated a new company in November and launched SailJazz.com, a site that sells clothes and hosts message boards for sailing buffs.

"Sometimes you just have to move on," Sam Boyle said. "I don't want to have the rest of my life tied up with this."
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Old 23-07-2005, 10:49   #6
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Gord, thanks for posing all the Sailnet info. You´ve made this thread "one stop shopping" for those concerned about Sailnet orders, etc. It will be interesting to see who makes it here from there...

Jack
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Old 23-07-2005, 16:58   #7
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Another dissatified customer

This post came a week late for me. They have a couple hundred+ of my $'s in their account. I just checked the status of my account and nothing has shipped in this week.

It's time to go to the bank and see if they can stop payment............><)))0>
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Old 26-07-2005, 10:35   #8
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July 25/05

From SAILNET’s Home Page http://www.sailnet.com/index.cfm :

”It has come to the attention of SailNet that postings have appeared on unmoderated forums that we host containing rumors and allegations against former and current management. We have no knowledge that any of the claims or allegations in these postings are true. We are attempting to remove as many of these unmoderated postings as possible.

The authors of any such postings will be held fully and solely responsible and liable for their content.”
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Old 28-07-2005, 04:08   #9
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Thumbs down

Well, they still haven't shipped my stuff so I've contacted the bank and stopped payment.

And according to their site the stuff was in stock.

So, that's it for Sailnet!
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Old 29-07-2005, 09:56   #10
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”Financial troubles sink SailNet” ~ bY JOHN P. MCDERMOTT
Charleston Post & Courier (7/28/05) http://www.charleston.net/business/

quote:
SailNet, an online shopping site for boating enthusiasts that expanded quickly during the dot-com boom, has declared bankruptcy and will be sold off.

The North Charleston-based company and its affiliates, all operating under the umbrella of MarineNet Inc., sought protection from creditors earlier this week in Columbia.

The once-high-flying company, which recently ceased operations, will not be reorganized. "Everything will be liquidated," said Ivan N. Nossokoff, the company's bankruptcy attorney. SailNet listed nearly $1.4 million in debts and $211,000 in assets,
mostly office equipment, inventory and unpaid invoices.

The decision to close and liquidate the business "was simply a matter of just not having enough money to continue to operate," Nossokoff said Wednesday. "It's just that plain and simple." The bankruptcy filing shows that revenue at SailNet sank by $1.2 million
last year, or 20 percent, to $4.7 million. Sales to date this year have totaled slightly more than $2 million. The company listed its biggest creditor as Larry French, a Florida
resident who sold his St. Petersburg-based sail-making business to SailNet about five years ago. He is owed about $420,000, according to a court filing. Other major creditors include National Bank of South Carolina, which is owed $350,000, and the owners of SailNet's former and current corporate offices in Mount Pleasant and North Charleston, respectively. The landlords are owed a combined $131,809.

The company is scheduled to meet with creditors Aug. 24 at a hearing in Charleston.
SailNet sought bankruptcy protection several days after The Post and Courier reported the online retailer had stopped taking orders and that its Leeds Avenue offices had been closed for at least several weeks. Customers who said they have been overcharged or have not received their orders have been posting complaints about the company on Internet message boards. Nossokoff said it's too early in the bankruptcy process to say how the court will handle any unfilled orders or overcharges. He also was not sure what will become of any personal information such as customers' credit card numbers that might be stored in SailNet's computer systems.

The liquidation plan spells the end of what had been a promising local technology business. SailNet was launched in 1994 in Detroit by Sam and Cheryl Boyle, who
moved the venture to the Charleston area in 1999. The next year, the couple sold a controlling stake for an undisclosed sum to IDG Ventures, a San Francisco-based venture capital firm. Flush with cash, SailNet began to expand through acquisitions in 2000, when it bought Johnson Sales Inc., a Florida business that manufactured sails and other boat accessories. That same year it acquired Boston-based competitor Boatscape.com. At the same time, SailNet hired a crew of programmers, sales staff and
craftsmen. At its peak, the dot-com employed about 60 workers in the Lowcountry and another 140 or so in Florida. The Boyles last week told The Post and Courier that they parted ways with the company's majority owners in December. The bankruptcy filing
listed about 30 other businesses and individuals as shareholders, whose investments in the company are wiped out. SailNet said in its bankruptcy filing that John Rublaitus, who was named president and chief executive officer in January, stepped down from
those positions Monday and is now serving as a consultant to the company. Nossokoff said Rublaitus was traveling Wednesday and unavailable for comment.

end quote

John P. McDermott can be reached at 937-5572 or
jmcdermott@postandcourier.com.
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Old 08-08-2005, 11:29   #11
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The Sailnet” bankruptcy, hasn’t yet (as of Aug. 8/05) affected the message boards, which are still up and running (though with somewhat reduced traffic).
http://www.sailnet.com/messageboards/index.cfm
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Old 18-08-2005, 09:34   #12
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Trustee

From Cheryl Boyle at SAILjazz:

Anyone seeking information about the SailNet Bankruptcy should contact the Court-appointed Trustee:
Mr. Kevin Campbell
Campbell Law Firm
890 Johnnie Dodds Boulevard
PO Box 684
Mt Pleasant SC 29465
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Old 23-08-2005, 10:52   #13
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Notice from SailNet’s Home page (as read August 23/05):
<quote>
SailNet’s community sections - including the email lists, message boards, and more than 1500 articles - will remain accessible during our current legal proceedings. The SailNet store is disabled. Over the next few weeks, SailNet could emerge with new ownership and again become a favored destination for sailors in need of hardware, equipment and accessories.
Thank you for your continued support.
<end quote>
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Old 24-08-2005, 02:26   #14
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Darn shame. Seems like only the truly cut throat survive. Oh well, its off to the local marine store here in the West. Had too many boat bucks saved up anyway.
In all seriousness, whatever endeavor the Boyles take up I wish them success, as my dealings with them when they owned sailnet were all positive.
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Old 30-08-2005, 09:41   #15
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Reporter seeks your Sailnet story

Posted at SAILNET, Aug. 29 2005 2:01 PM
Author: reporter
Re: SailNet customers and fans,

I'm a newspaper reporter with The Post and Courier in Charleston, South Carolina. SailNet, which is headquartered here, filed for bankruptcy in late July and the government is now selling off its remaining assets. I am writing about the process, but I'm interested in what is happening to those of you who have been charged and have not yet received the ordered goods or a refund.

Please contact me at kstock@postandcourier.com if you care to comment.

- Kyle Stock
Business Reporter
The Post and Courier
www.charleston.net
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