Published: Tue, April 17, 2018
Money | By Armando Alvarado

Bon-Ton Bankruptcy Auction Begins

Bon-Ton Bankruptcy Auction Begins

The company's stores include Carson's, Younkers, Elder-Beerman, Bergner's, Boston Store, and Herberger's, as well as Bon-Ton.

Reuters news service is reporting this today that sources are saying the only corporate bidders in court-supervised auction were liquidators.

Proceeds from Monday's auction will be used to repay Bon-Ton's creditors, according to the State Journal.

One of the two bids is a joint effort from Hilco Merchant Resources and Gordon Brothers Retail Partners, which is the same group running a store liquidation for Toys R Us. SiouxFalls.Business reports Bon-Ton has not been profitable since 2010. The department store chain was sold first to Equitable of Iowa in 1978 and then to Saks INc.in 1996. Boston Store, for example, was founded in 1897, and Younkers in 1856.

A group of second lien bondholders had objected to Bon-Ton's request to pay the fee.

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Two mall owners teamed up to make a bid to keep the stores going.

Once the company selects a winning bidder and the proposed deal is approved by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Delaware, the liquidator can begin selling the inventory, store leases, fixtures and intellectual property.

As the Business Journal pointed out, Reuters has reported that only liquidators have bid and that Bon-Ton will go out of business.

Bon-Ton had been working with a potential buyer on an arrangement that would have kept some of its stores open, but based on the new report, it appears that the sale fell through.

Bon-Ton and Toys "R" Us operated a combined almost 60 million square feet (5.6 million square meters) of store space, according to their latest annual reports, and employed a combined 83,000 when they entered bankruptcy.

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