Forever 21 Files for Bankruptcy, Adding to Retail Apocalypse

ELIZA RONALDS-HANNON AND LAUREN COLEMAN-LOCHNER | September 30, 2019

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filed for bankruptcy protection, the latest big fashion merchant who couldn’t cope with high rents and heavy competition as the shift to e-commerce cut a swathe through traditional retailers. Court papers filed in Wilmington, Delaware, show Forever 21 has estimated liabilities on a consolidated basis of between $1 billion and $10 billion. The Chapter 11 filing allows the Los Angeles-based company to keep operating while it works out a plan to pay its creditors and turn around the business. Forever 21 has obtained $275 million in financing from lenders with JPMorgan Chase & Co. as agent, as well as $75 million in new capital from TPG Sixth Street Partners and its affiliated funds. It plans to exit most of its international locations in Asia and Europe, but will continue operations in Mexico and Latin America. The stores expect to honor gift cards, returns and exchanges.

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