Barneys New York Could Close Down All Its Stores: Reports

By Web Staff

Luxury retailer Barneys New York could close all of its locations around the United States.

ABC7, in reporting on the development on Oct. 17, said the retailer initially said it would shutter some 15 stores and leave seven open.

However, all 22 stores may close, the station said. That includes the flagship store in Manhattan and one in Beverly Hills, California.

Barneys New York has penned a deal to sell its assets for $271.4 million to Authentic Brands Group, a licensing company that owns such brands as Nine West and Aeropostale, and investment bank B. Riley Financial Inc., according to court documents filed late Wednesday.

The deal is characterized as a “stalking horse purchase agreement,” an initial starting bid offer for the bankrupt company’s assets from an interested buyer chosen by Barneys. The goal is to avoid low bids as part of a court auction.

Barneys can conduct an auction until Oct. 24. If there are no further bids, Barneys will pursue the agreement with Authentic Brands and B. Riley.

In elaborating, Barneys told the Fox affiliate station that the chain is now “working hard to achieve a successful sale process that will preserve the integrity of this incredible brand and ultimately benefit our employees, customers, vendors and other business partners.”

All seven Barneys stores would likely close, according to the court papers. According to multiple reports, Saks Fifth Avenue is working with Authentic on a potential agreement to license the Barneys name.

Authentic Brands may choose to keep some stores open depending on the outcome of talks with landlords, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Barneys New York filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in August, the latest retailer to buckle as shoppers move online. The chain also was struggling with escalating annual rents, particularly at its crown jewel store on Manhattan’s Madison Avenue. Barney’s Manhattan landlord doubled the rent to nearly $30 million this year.

Barneys, controlled by New York hedge fund Perry Capital, listed more than $100 million in debt and more than $100 million in assets in its bankruptcy filing in the Southern District of New York.

More Bankruptcies

Several U.S. retailers have filed for bankruptcy over the past two years, including Forever 21 and Toys ‘R’ Us.

Forever 21

The fast-fashion retailer filed on Sept. 29 to restructure its business and requested approval to close up to 178 U.S. stores. Forever 21 listed both assets and liabilities in the range of $1 billion to $10 billion, according to the court filing.

Payless Shoesource

The U.S. discount retailer in February filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection for the second time, along with its North American subsidiaries. The retailer had said it would close about 2,500 stores in North America and wind down its e-commerce operations.

Toys’R’Us

The toy retailer filed for Chapter 11 in September, hoping to restructure some $5 billion in debt, much of which stemmed from a $6.6 billion leveraged buyout by private equity firms in 2005. It liquidated in 2018, a blow to hundreds of toy makers that sold products to the chain, including Barbie maker Mattel Inc and rival Hasbro Inc.

Radio Shack

The U.S. electronics chain filed for bankruptcy in March for the second time in a little over two years, faced with a challenging retail environment and an unsatisfying partnership with wireless provider Sprint Corp.

Fred’s Inc.

In September, the pharmacy and discount retailer said it filed for Chapter 11, months after the company began shuttering hundreds of unprofitable stores in the United States.

Gymboree

The children’s clothing retailer filed for bankruptcy protection in January, the second in almost two years, and said it would close more than 800 Gymboree and Crazy 8 stores.

H.H. Gregg

The appliances and electronics retailer and its Gregg Appliances Inc unit filed for bankruptcy protection in March, as they continue struggling with declining sales for about the past four years.

The Epoch Times reporter Jack Phillips and The Associated Presss contributed to this report.