Gymboree prepares to file for bankruptcy
Amidst recent news of struggling retailers like Prada who reported a 15.9 percent fall in annual profit, declining sales and store closures for Banana Republic, Amazon dominating sales and retail job loss across the industry, now comes the news that Gymboree Corp. is preparing to file for bankruptcy, according to a report in Bloomberg Markets.
This is a blow to the retailer considering it was reporting a positive Q1 in 2016, but the slight increase in sales (up 6% from 4%) wasn't enough to move the financial needle. While company representatives from the struggling children’s clothing retailer declined to comment on the issue, there has been speculation in the media that the decision to file was made because of a looming June 1 interest payment on Gymboree Corp.’s debt—more than one billion dollars from its buyout with Bain Capital in 2010. With 1,300 stores in its portfolio, Gymboree hasn’t made a profit since 2011, equating to a loss of more than $800 million. According to sources interviewed by Bloomberg, the company instituted the help of Rothschild & Co. to help keep its head above water.
Actionables include a reorganization of debt and possibly shifting control to lenders Searchlight Capital, Oppenheimer Holdings, Capital Management and Brigade Capital Management. Gymboree’s $761 million term loan is due in February 2018 and is currently trading at approximately 44 cents on the dollar—a 36 cent decline since late September. Rivals Carter’s Inc. and Children’s Place Inc. benefited from this loss with a rise in shares immediately following Bloomberg’s announcement that Gymboree is preparing to file for bankruptcy.
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