Pier 1 Imports has entered into a Plan Support Agreement with a majority of its term loan lenders and is pursuing a sale of the company.
To facilitate an orderly sale process and implement the PSA, the company and its subsidiaries have begun voluntary Chapter 11 proceedings in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.
The company also intends to use this process to complete the closure of up to 450 store locations, which includes the closure of all its stores in Canada. To date, the company has closed or initiated going-out-business sales at more than 400 locations. The company is also in the process of closing two distribution centers to reflect its revised store footprint.
Robert Riesbeck, Pier 1’s Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer, said, “In recent months, we have taken significant steps forward in our business transformation and cost-reduction initiatives. Today’s actions are intended to provide Pier 1 with additional time and financial flexibility as we now work to unlock additional value for our stakeholders through a sale of the company.”
“We are moving ahead in this process with the support of our lenders and are pleased with the initial interest as we engage in discussions with potential buyers.”
Pier 1 has received a commitment of approximately $256 million in debtor-in-possession financing from Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and Pathlight Capital. Following court approval, the Company expects this financing, together with cash flows from operations, to provide ample liquidity to support continued operations and the sale process through the Chapter 11 process.
Pier 1’s stores and online platform are open and operating, and the company remains focused on providing customers with unique, on-trend merchandise and an exceptional shopping experience. The company expects to operate its business in the normal course during this process.
Pier 1 intends to conduct a court-supervised sale process and complete the sale through a Chapter 11 plan. Pier 1 expects that the deadline to submit qualified binding bids will be on or around March 23, 2020, subject to procedures to be approved by the court.
In connection with its plans to close all its stores in Canada, Pier 1 is also commencing proceedings in Canada.
A&G Realty Partners is assisting the company with its store closures and lease modifications.
Kirkland & Ellis and Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt are serving as legal advisors to Pier 1 in the U.S. and Canada, respectively. AlixPartners is serving as the company’s restructuring advisor, and Guggenheim Securities, is serving as the Company’s investment banker.