November 1, 2019 / 7:24 PM / 11 days ago

Barneys' Madison Avenue store to remain open for at least a year

(Reuters) - Barneys New York Inc’s flagship Madison Avenue outlet in Manhattan will remain open for at least another year in a slimmed-down form while the buyer of the luxury retailer’s brands negotiates with the store’s landlord.

FILE PHOTO: The Barneys New York sign is seen outside the luxury department store in New York, U.S., July 31, 2019. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

A bankruptcy judge approved the sale of Barneys brands and other intellectual property to Authentic Brands, a firm that acquires and licenses brands, on Thursday. The deal closed on Friday, Authentic Brands said.

The store’s well-known eatery, Fred’s, will also remain open.

“We have come to terms with Authentic Brands Group, Barneys new owner, to keep the Madison Avenue store open in a smaller footprint for the next 12 months while we continue to explore longer term solutions,” Daniel Levy, president of real estate investment firm Ashkenazy Acquisition Corp, the store’s landlord, said in a statement on Friday.

Levy said the New York store generates about $20 million in annual profitability for Barneys, even with a recent raise in rent. 

A cultural touchstone for generations of New Yorkers and followers of fashion, Barneys filed for bankruptcy protection in August, citing rent hikes as a factor.

Authentic Brands, which bid roughly $271 million for Barneys, said it will turn the Madison Avenue location into a pop-up store.

The firm plans to license the Barneys brand to Hudson’s Bay Co owned Saks Fifth Avenue and will open shops in Saks locations across the United States and Canada.

That will start with an attempted Barneys reboot on the fifth floor of the Saks Fifth Avenue location in Manhattan. Remaining Barneys stores are expected to close.

“Over the past several months, we have worked diligently with the court, our lenders and creditors to maximize the value of the Barneys assets and we’re pleased to have reached the conclusion of this process,” Barneys said in a statement.

Reporting by Uday Sampath in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila

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