NEW YORK, NEW YORK (March 11, 2020) – Modell’s Sporting Goods, America’s oldest family owned and operated retailer of sporting goods, athletic footwear, active apparel and fan gear, announced it has voluntarily filed for relief under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code in the U.S Bankruptcy Court for the District of New Jersey on March 11, 2020.
The company’s lenders and long-standing partners will provide Modell’s with the financial flexibility to operate the business in the near term, including the timely payment of employee wages and benefits, continued provision of customer orders and shipments, and other obligations as they come due going forward. Modell’s stores will initiate store closing liquidation sales of sporting goods equipment, footwear, team apparel and active apparel to sports fans in all stores and will continue its online sales during this process.
“Over the past year, we evaluated several options to restructure our business to allow us to maintain our current operations. While we achieved some success, in partnership with our landlords and vendors, it was not enough to avoid a bankruptcy filing amid an extremely challenging environment for retailers,” said Modell’s CEO Mitchell Modell. “We are extremely appreciative of the support that our lenders (JP Morgan Chase and Wells Fargo), vendors and landlords provided during this difficult period, engaging in extensive renegotiation efforts and allowing us to pursue every possible avenue to preserve the jobs of our loyal associates.
“I want to thank each and every one of our associates for their support over the years and our customers for their historic support of Modell’s. This is certainly not the outcome I wanted, and it is one of the most difficult days of my life. But I believe liquidation provides the greatest recovery for our creditors. We have partnered with Tiger Capital Group to liquidate the remaining stores beginning Friday morning, March 13. The return from the liquidation of the first 19 stores managed by Tiger has been beyond spectacular, and we are confident this performance will continue across the remaining stores, maximizing return for our creditors.”
Modell’s has been engaged in discussions with its financial creditors and has been exploring a recapitalization of the business through a potential sale of some or all of its assets or an equity investment. Modell’s will continue to pursue these discussions.
Robert Duffy, Managing Director, BRG, has been named Chief Restructuring Officer of the Company. RBC Capital Markets is acting as investment banker for Modell’s; BRG is also acting as Modell’s restructuring advisor, Cole Schotz is Modell’s legal counsel, and A&G Realty Partners is marketing the store leases.
About Modell’s Sporting Goods
Founded in 1889, Modell’s Sporting Goods is the local family sporting goods destination that provides a convenient and compelling shopping experience for the athlete and fan in all of us. Modell’s offers customers an assortment of top brands in sporting goods equipment, footwear, team apparel and active apparel for every level of play year-round. The retailer operates 153 stores located in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, DC. In addition, www.Modells.com is a diverse website which services customers all over the country, filling all of their needs regardless of their residence.