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Swisher Hygiene faces trouble yet again

Charlotte-based Swisher Hygiene is again facing a threat of having its stock removed from the Nasdaq stock exchange.

The company, which provides restroom-cleaning products and services, received notice from the Nasdaq July 23 that its share price had fallen below $1, the minimum bid price needed to remain on the stock exchange.

The notice comes on the heels of a 30-day period that ended June 16, in which Swisher’s closing price failed to meet the $1 requirement.

Swisher’s stock has flirted with the minimum bid price for about two months – falling to an all-time low of 75 cents on June 20. On Friday, its share price closed at 94 cents on the Nasdaq, marking the third consecutive day it closed below $1.

Trouble has plagued Swisher for more than a decade, beginning in 2001 when the SEC fined the company $400,000 for accounting irregularities. In 2002, Patrick Swisher, the company’s founder, was sent to federal prison for tax evasion and lying on a home mortgage application.

Swisher is no longer affiliated with the company.

Last year the company’s financial practices came under investigation and its then-CEO, Steven Berrard, stepped down. Since then, Swisher has faced recurrent warnings of having its stock delisted from both the Nasdaq and Toronto Stock Exchanges for its stock price and inability to file required financial statements on time.

The company regained compliance with both stock exchanges in June after completing outstanding securities filing requirements. Swisher had faced significant delays in filing since November 2011 – at one point amounting to more than a year of postponement.

Now, with the company’s newest warning of being delisted, Swisher has 180 days to regain compliance – which can be met by maintaining a share price of at least $1 for a minimum of 10 consecutive business days.

Swisher is also eligible for an additional 180 days to regain compliance beyond the initial period.

While a delisted stock does not mean a company is headed for bankruptcy, many regard it as a first step toward a company losing money.

Swisher said in a statement that it will work to regain compliance during the initial 180-day period.

Meanwhile, the company, which is headquartered at Piedmont Row in the South Park area, is also facing a lawsuit by shareholders who allege that the company misstated financial results to hide losses and inflate the company’s stock price. Swisher has denied the claims.

McCabe: 704-358-5197; Twitter: mccabe_caitlin
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