The Authentic Brands Group-led consortium that is set to acquire certain assets of bankrupt Aéropostale Inc. received Manhattan bankruptcy court approval of its $243.3 million going-concern purchase on Monday. As reported in WWD, the purchase by the ABG-led group is set to keep about 300 stores open and save more than 5,000 jobs. The acquisition is set to close later this week.
The consortium includes landlords Simon Property Group and General Growth Properties, who will partner with ABG to operate the stores. ABG would take control and ownership of the intellectual property assets, including the international licensing rights to Aéropostale. Also part of the consortium are Gordon Brothers Group and Hilco Merchant Resources, who will dispose of the assets and store locations that ABG does not want.
ABG’s acquisition also helps to keep the international business intact, which is mostly comprised of franchise arrangements. Further, ABG is likely to expand the nameplate to other territories, creating more jobs in those regions
In winning the bankruptcy-court sponsored auction for the teen retailer, ABG beat out the chain’s largest secured creditor, private equity firm Sycamore Partners. It wasn’t immediately clear how much Sycamore had bid, or whether it had credit bid for the retailer, but sources indicated that the bid was not a going-concern offer.