Sur La Table, the bankrupt upscale cookware chain, sold for almost $90 million and a promise to keep at least 50 stores open, according to court papers.
A joint venture between e-commerce investment firm CSC Generation and Marquee Brands topped an opening bid from affiliates of Fortress Investment Group at auction last week, according to court papers and a lawyer for Sur La Table’s junior creditors. A representative for Seattle-based Sur La Table didn’t respond to requests for comment, while CSC founder Justin Yoshimura and Marquee didn’t immediately respond to emails seeking comment Monday evening.
The Wall Street Journal earlier reported the identities of the buyers.
Sur La Table, known for its in-store cooking classes and pricey kitchenware, shut its stores as COVID-19 gripped the United States, then filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in July. The company was headed toward a full-blown liquidation until Fortress stepped in with a so-called stalking-horse offer, which sets the floor for further bids, a lawyer for the company said previously.
The sale still needs bankruptcy-court approval. A successful sale of the chain would save some 2,000 jobs, the company said in previous court papers. The retailer, founded in 1972 in Pike Place Market, had 121 stores across the United States when it filed for bankruptcy, according to a statement at the time.
CSC Generation was founded in 2016 and has since bought the intellectual property of bankrupt department-store chain Bon-Ton Stores and home-decor chain Z Gallerie. Marquee is a brand-management firm owned by investor funds managed by Neuberger Berman.