Digital Brands Group, owner of apparel labels such as ACE Studios, Stateside and Bailey 44, is warning of its viability as a going concern due to mounting losses while hinting at the possibility of a bankruptcy filing, less than a year after going public. The company did tout a 425% jump in Q4 revenue and growth in January and February.
Chapter 11 Bankruptcy
Alex and Ani, the Rhode Island-based retailer which reached huge popularity a decade ago with its inexpensive bangles and charm bracelets promoting spirituality and good vibes, has filed for has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The company, owned by a UK concern, has faced poor sales, lawsuits and internal conflicts.
Loves Furniture, a Michigan startup that went into business in 2020 just as the pandemic was emerging, has filed for bankruptcy protection as bills piled up and inventory, fulfillment and logistics issues hamstrung its operations. The company claims that fulfillment issues caused by Penske, its contract logistics provider, led to the troubles.
It was another eventful week in the ongoing saga of retail bankruptcies. Tailored Brands, parent of Jos. A. Bank and Men’s Wearhouse, plans to put a greater emphasis on casual apparel as part of its Chapter 11 filing, while the investment group REV is planning to snatch up assets from both Pier 1 and Modell’s out of bankruptcy court.
A partnership between mall giant Simon Property Group and apparel licensing firm Authentic Brands has made a $305 million bid to acquire the assets and intellectual property of Brooks Brothers out of bankruptcy court, according to various media reports. The partnership, named Sparc LLC, plans to keep at least 125 stores open.
Ascena Retail Group, parent of iconic women’s apparel brands Lane Bryant and Ann Taylor, has filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and announced plans to shutter 1,600 of the 2,800 stores across its various chains in an effort to reduce its massive debt by $1 billion. The news comes weeks after an executive bonus windfall.
RTW Retailwinds, parent of apparel retailer New York & Co., filed for bankruptcy protection, adding it plans to close most if not all of its nearly 400 stores and seek a buyer for its ecommerce business. The company plans to continue operations, including re-openings where appropriate, paying vendors and suppliers and employees.
Brooks Brothers, famous for its pinstriped suits worn by 40 of the 45 U.S. presidents and legions of executives since its 1818 founding in New York, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, citing the impact of COVID-19 as a major factor. The company, with $1 billion in sales and $300 in debt, expects to find a buyer shortly.
Shortly after J.C. Penney filed Chapter 11, Amazon reportedly was in talks about possibly picking up the troubled store chain on the cheap. The plan calls closing 242 of 846 stores by 2021, setting up a real estate investment trust (REIT) to handle the balance of its physical assets and receiving $900 million in debtor-in-possession financing.
What should the growing number of retailers weighing bankruptcy be considering, and what kinds of restructuring plans should they set up? Attorney Thomas Wolford, a partner with Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg, gives us an insider’s look at what goes on from filing through re-emergence in this MCM CommerceChat podcast.