July 16 Love Culture Inc on Wednesday filed for
Chapter 11 bankruptcy and said it is up for sale, becoming the
latest women's apparel retailer to seek protection from
The company, which according to its website has 82 stores
stretching from Massachusetts to Hawaii, joins Ashley Stewart
Holdings Inc, Coldwater Creek Inc, Dots LLC and
Loehmann's Inc among retailers to file for bankruptcy since late
last year as consumers curb spending.
Love Culture said it plans during the bankruptcy process to
close money-losing stores, restructure its debt and investigate
options "including a possible sale of substantially all of its
assets as a going concern."
It said "several financial and strategic buyers" have
expressed interest in the company.
Founded in 2007 by former Forever 21 executives Jai Rhee and
Bennett Koo, Love Culture is aimed at women in the 18-to-35 age
range. It opened an online store in 2010 and started the more
upscale brand Boutique Culture in 2012.
The company said it began experiencing financial
difficulties in 2012 during its expansion, and that the cost of
upgrading its technology affected cash flow.
In a petition filed with the U.S. bankruptcy court in
Newark, New Jersey, Love Culture said it has as much as $50
million in both assets and liabilities.
Net sales totaled $162.4 million in the year ended Feb. 1,
2014, it said in a court filing. Four of its stores are in New
Love Culture's advisers include PricewaterhouseCoopers LLC
and the law firm Lowenstein Sandler.
The case is In re: Love Culture Inc, U.S. Bankruptcy Court,
District of New Jersey, No. 14-bk-24508.
(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Leslie