Retailer Coldwater Creek files for bankruptcy

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Women's clothing chain Coldwater Creek has filed for bankruptcy and plans to liquidate its operations.

The Idaho retailer — which has Pittsburgh-area stores in Ross, Monroeville, Mt. Lebanon, Cranberry, Grove City and Erie —announced that it plans to start liquidation sales in early May. The company's most recent quarterly report listed 343 traditional stores, 36 factory stores and 7 spas.

Coldwater Creek said it has been reviewing its options for the past six months and considered many options, including a sale of the company. But the company wasn't able to find a buyer or a source of enough capital to turn the business around.

"The company intends to hold going-out-of-business sales in the coming months, which are historically busy shopping periods for Coldwater Creek," the company's announcement said.

Coldwater Creek said it has a commitment for $75 million in "debtor-in-possession" financing from its existing lender, Wells Fargo. It has already worked out a deal with Gordon Brothers Retail Partners and Hilco Merchant Resources to manage the liquidation sales.

The bankruptcy court will need to approve those plans. Coldwater Creek filed for Chapter 11 in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Del.

In December, the company reported on its third-quarter results, showing net sales had dropped from $188 million the previous year to $155 million in the three months ended Nov. 2.

Teresa F. Lindeman: or at 412-263-2018.

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