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Equity company buys Coldwater Creek assets, talks of relaunch

From Staff Reports

The name, if not the actual fashion designs, of Coldwater Creek may be resurrected, after a New York private equity company said it has purchased some of the assets of the Sandpoint-based retailer that filed for bankruptcy and shut down operations earlier this spring.

Sycamore Partners has acquired Coldwater Creek’s brand names, company trademarks, website and some intellectual property, said Jim Bell, Coldwater Creek’s chief operating officer. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.

The company said in a news release it plans to relaunch Coldwater Creek as a retail brand, possibly later this year.

Sycamore affiliate CWC Direct LLC bought the assets as part of Coldwater Creek’s ongoing Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings.

“Coldwater Creek is an outstanding brand with a 30-year heritage and strong support from its loyal base of longtime customers,” said Peter Morrow, a member of Sycamore Partners. “We are excited about adding Coldwater Creek to our growing portfolio of leading retail brands and look forward to reintroducing the brand to the marketplace.”

The Sycamore Partners portfolio includes a number of other retail brands, including Hot Topic and Aeropostale.

No date has been set by CWC Direct for the relaunch of the product line.

Coldwater Creek, founded in 1984 as a catalog business by Dennis Pence and Ann Pence, filed for bankruptcy protection earlier this spring.

The company is continuing to sell off remaining inventory at a discount, under a liquidation plan managed by Hilco Merchant Resources and Gordon Brothers Retail Partners.

The shutdown affected about 350 stores and erased about 5,500 jobs nationwide, including 340 in Sandpoint and 100 in Coeur d’Alene.

The company’s bankruptcy filing in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware lists assets worth $278.5 million and debts of $361.3 million.

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