Love Culture Files Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

by San Antonio Attorney

Clothing chain Love Culture Inc. is the most recent retailer of women’s wear to file bankruptcy protection.

The sales in women’s apparel have been sluggish in the past several months. Retailers have been filing for bankruptcy since last year. Loehmann’s Holdings Inc., Coldwater Creek Inc., Ashley Stewart Holdings Inc. and Dots LLC all sought for creditor protection.

According to Rick Bunka, the retailer’s chief restructuring officer, the process enables them to close stores that are not doing well and concentrate on boosting sales in their remaining stores.

General Growth Properties Inc. (GGP), one of the biggest shopping-mall owners in the U.S., is one of Love Culture’s unsecured creditors. The retail company owes GGP $3.9 million on store lease. Simon Property Group Inc., the biggest mall owner in the world, is also Love Culture’s landlord and it owes about $2 million. It also owes $1.2 million to an affiliate of Taubman Centers Inc.

Kenneth A. Rosen, Love Culture’s lawyer, did not give an immediate response to an e-mail asking for particulars on the store closings or sale proposal. General Growth spokesperson David Keating did not comment about the leases.

Love Culture is exploring many options including selling the majority of its assets. There are several investors and merchants interested in the company, according to the retailer.

Love Culture was founded by Jai Rhee and Bennett Koo in 2007. It sells affordable accessories and clothes to young women. Both founders of Love Culture were former executives at Forever 21. In 2010, the retailer started out an online store and a couple of years after, it launched Boutique Culture, which is an upscale line.

The 80-store clothing company listed up to $50 million in both assets and liabilities when it filed for Chapter 11 protection today in Newark, New Jersey.

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