Century 21 Department Stores LLC – With Sales Wrapping Up, Debtors Seek 90-day Extension of Exclusive Plan Filing Period until April 8, 2021

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December 23, 2020 – The Debtors filed with the Court a motion to extend the periods during which they have an exclusive right to file a Plan and solicit acceptances thereof, through and including April 8, 2021 and June 7, 2021, respectively [Docket No. 384]. Absent the requested relief, the Plan filing and solicitation periods are scheduled to expire on January 9, 2021 and March 10, 2021, respectively.

The Debtors said they finished selling all of their inventory, furniture, fixtures and equipment earlier this month and closed on a sale of their intellectual property on December 11, 2020. Additionally, the Debtors said in the extension motion that they "have entered into agreements to sell a participation interest in the Insurance Action, while at the same time resolving the estates’ claims against certain of their current and former equity holders." If approved by the Court, that sale is scheduled to close on December 31, 2020.

As a result of this recent case activity, the Debtor said they need more time to formulate a Plan.

The extension motion explains, “The Debtors commenced the Chapter 11 Cases to facilitate an orderly liquidation and value-maximizing sale of substantially all of their assets following an unprecedented decline in the retail industry in large part caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. In furtherance thereof, the Debtors commenced going-out-of-business sales (the ‘GOB Sales’) in September and, this month, finished selling all of their inventory, furniture, fixtures and equipment. The Debtors closed each of their thirteen (13) retail locations and rejected each associated lease, thereby reducing administrative expenses being incurred by the Debtors’ estates.

While the GOB Sales were ongoing, the Debtors sought and obtained approval of bidding procedures for the sale of their intellectual property, conducted a thorough marketing process and held an auction, which yielded a purchase price in excess of eleven (11) times the amount of the initial stalking horse bid. That sale closed on December 11, 2020.

Finally, the Debtors pursued a sale of the Insurance Action and, as of this month, have entered into agreements to sell a participation interest in the Insurance Action, while at the same time resolving the estates’ claims against certain of their current and former equity holders, a hearing on the approval of which is set for December 28, 2020. If the Court approves the sale and settlement, the Debtors anticipate that the sale will close on December 31, 2020.

Focusing on liquidating their assets, the Debtors have made substantial progress in maximizing the value of their estates. The Debtors’ progress to date has been achieved in no small part due to the breathing room provided by chapter 11. While the Debtors have efficiently utilized their time in chapter 11 thus far, the Debtors require additional time to propose and confirm a plan of liquidation that will distribute to the Debtors’ creditors the net proceeds of the Debtors’ asset sales and any remaining assets. The requested extension of the Exclusivity Periods will allow the plan negotiation process to proceed, afford the Debtors time to obtain confirmation of the plan, not prejudice any parties in interest and promote the Debtors’ goal of maximizing value for their stakeholders.”

About the Debtors

According to the Debtors: “Century 21 has been a New York City icon for nearly 60 years, legendary for its exceptional offering of designer brands at amazing prices. A pioneer and leader in high-end, off-price fashion retail, Century 21 offers men’s, women’s, and children’s apparel, footwear, outerwear, lingerie, and accessories, along with beauty and home goods, at select stores and online at c21stores.com. The retailer is headquartered in Downtown Manhattan, with additional locations in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Florida.”

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