Court Approves Sale of Signature Styles

It’s official: A bankruptcy court judge approved the sale of Signature Style’s assets to Artemiss. Terms of the agreement call for Artemiss to pay $2 million in cash, and assume up to $10 million owed in gift cards and some debt.

Signature Styles, which owns apparel brands Spiegel, Newport News and Shape Fx, recorded a net loss of $31.1 million in 2010 on sales of $119.9 million, according to court documents. The company listed assets of $48.6 million and liabilities as $87.6 million.

A division of private equity firm Patriarch Partners that was formed to purchase Spiegel Brands two years ago, Signature Styles filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in June. It. Artemiss is a division of Patriarch Partners created to buy Signature Styles.

It doesn’t appear that there were any other bidders for Signature Styles. “No one must’ve thought it was worth what the debt amount was,” says Lee Helman, managing director for investment firm Financo.

Chris Kampe, managing director for investment firm Tully & Holland, says it remains to be seen how expenses will be cut and revenue grown to return Signature Styles to profitability.

But this court approval should pave the way for Artemiss to carry on Signature Styles free from many of its past obligations, Kampe adds. “The sale of assets through the bankruptcy court discharges the former liabilities of Signature Styles.”

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