Two clothing companies owned by high-flying Kiwis have run into financial strife - with their owners linked by underwear model Nicky Watson.

Kiwi businessman Eric Watson is under pressure after the New York Stock Exchange threatened to delist American Apparel, which he co-owns. The warning came after the company delayed filing its first quarter results.

Meanwhile, James and August Ltd, the underwear company run by Sally Ridge, has gone into voluntary liquidation. Ridge formed the company with Tessa Apa in 2004. Her former partner Adam Parore is also a director.

The liquidation of James and August follows the demise of Ridge's marrriage to Parore earlier this year - when she sought refuge with Eric Watson's former wife Nicky. The first report from liquidators C&C Strategic Ltd was filed with the Companies Office on Friday stating that $1 million in debts had been registered against James and August.

American Apparel narrowly escaped filing for bankruptcy by securing a US$80M loan ($118m) from Lion Capital.