Charlotte Russe begins liquidation
- A bankruptcy judge on Wednesday approved the sale of teen apparel brand Charlotte Russe to SB360 Capital Partners, a liquidation company, according to court documents. Charlotte Russe could not be reached for immediate comment by Retail Dive.
- In a statement sent to USA Today, the company confirmed plans to shutter all stores, begin the liquidation process and sell its intellectual property. It also said it is in talks with a potential buyer that is interested in a "continued brick and mortar presence to continue to serve our loyal customers in the future," according to the statement.
- Liquidation sales are expected to roll out around March 7, USA Today reports.
Without a stalking horse bidder for the business by mid-February, Charlotte Russe previously said it would resort to liquidation, and now that plan is becoming a reality. The move though, is not exactly unexpected.
In 2016, Fitch listed the company's debt on its "Bonds of Concern" list, and Retail Dive flagged it as a retailer that could go bankrupt in 2017. The company is one of 15% of retailers acquired by a private equity firm over the past 15 years to file for Chapter 11, according to a Retail Dive analysis. And now it's a part of a smaller percentage that resort to liquidation, including the likes of Toys R Us.
In 2009, the company went private in a $380 million take-private deal from Advent International. At the time, the company operated more than 500 stores in 48 states. That footprint has dwindled in the years since, despite an acquisition in 2016 to buy children's brand Peek Kids and its 10 stores.
As a mall chain catering to teens, declining foot traffic, changing consumer behavior and increased competition from fast-fashion and online players have all rattled Charlotte Russe's place within retail.
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