Monday, April 27, 2009

Filene's Basement To File Chapter 22

Another retail casualty about to hit, this time clothing chain Filene's Basement. Bloomberg cites two people familiar with the situation, who claim a Chapter 22 (that is a repeat 11 for the less than cynical) may be filed as soon as tomorrow.
Filene’s Basement, the century-old clothing chain, may seek bankruptcy protection this week, according to two people with knowledge of the plan.

A filing may come as early as tomorrow, said the people, who declined to be identified because the information isn’t public. There are several parties interested in buying assets out of bankruptcy, one person said.

Former Filene’s Basement owner Retail Ventures Inc. said April 21 that it transferred the unit to Buxbaum Group, a company that appraises and liquidates assets, for no proceeds. FB II Acquisition, the Buxbaum affiliate formed to acquire Filene’s Basement, said in a statement two days later that it was reviewing “all available” options for the chain, which sells discounted designer goods.

Buxbaum, based in Agoura Hills, California, is a liquidator and appraiser of retail and wholesale inventories, and provides turnaround, expansion and other consulting services.
The first time FB filed for bankruptcy was in August 1999, and was bought out of chapter by Retail Ventures predecessors, owner also of the DSW shoe chain. If Linens 'N Things is any indication, the ensuing liquidation will leave yet more strip malls with one less tenant. The company's retail locations are concentrated in the northeast, and at last count had about 25 soon to be vacant storefronts... This is yet another "investment highlight" for Commercial Real Estate and Merrill Lynch's REIT prospectuses, which has at least another $30 billion left to raise before the squeeze is over. Sphere: Related Content
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