Payless closing stores

A&G Realty Partners said today that it has been retained to “manage the sale” of the Payless ShoeSource leases in North America. The footwear retailer filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection earlier this week, and will be closing its remaining stores in the U.S. and Canada.

The total number of leases for sale is 2,587. A&G said the leases being offered range in size from 500 square feet to 10,000 square feet — with an average footprint of 3,000 square feet. “The available leases include 255 locations in California, 192 in Texas, 170 in Florida and 157 in New York,” the company said.

Payless told several media outlets last week that it was seeking bankruptcy protection. On Monday, the company filed a Chapter 11 in the Eastern District of Missouri court. In the filing, it listed liabilities of between $500 million and $1 billion and said it had between 50,000 and 100,000 creditors.

A&G copresident Emilio Amendola said that with locations available “in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and all 10 Canadian provinces, the Payless leases offer incredible market penetration opportunities for food, fashion or service brands looking to enter new regions.”

“The diversity of the Payless leases — with urban, suburban strip center, freestanding highway and mall stores — creates a wide range of possibilities for expanding chains seeking affordable rents in prime locations,” Amendola said. “We expect a strong response from national, regional and local tenants.”

A&G said plans call for the leases to be sold under “a multitiered process, aligned with groups of monthly store closings that are expected to begin in March and conclude in May. Consequently, the leases will be sold in a series of auctions. Full details will be provided at a later date.”

Prior clients of A&G Realty Partners include Sports Authority, Toys ‘R’ Us, The Bon-Ton Stores, Office Depot, CVS and Radio Shack, among others.

In spring 2017, Payless filed Chapter 11 and closed several hundred stores. The company emerged from its restructuring after four months, and had whittled down its store base from 4,400 to 3,500. As part of this most recent Chapter 11, more than 400 stores in 20 other countries will remain open. About 16,000 employees will lose their jobs in the U.S. and Canada as a result of the liquidation.

The top trade creditors owed money that were listed in the court filing include Moda with $9 million, Performance Team Freight Systems with $5.5 million, Panhong Footwear Ltd. with $4.2 million, Ever-Rite International with $4.1 million, The Asean Corp. with $3.7 million and C&C Accord with $3.7 million, among others.

Payless was founded in 1956.

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