Steve & Barry’s Files for Bankruptcy Protection

Port Washington, N.Y. Steve & Barry’s LLC said Wednesday that it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, according to the Associated Press.

It also announced that it was considering a plan to sell all or some of its assets to repay outstanding debt.

The chain, which operates 276 locations in 39 states, said that it and 63 of its affiliates filed the petition in the U.S. bankruptcy court for the Southern District of New York.

Company officials blamed a cash crunch as a result of the tighter credit markets and general sluggish economic conditions. These factors hurt its plans to open stores and its ability to borrow money, the report said.

“The generally poor environment for apparel retailers has reduced funding to our suppliers, landlords and to our company,” Steve Shore and Barry Prevor, co-founders and co-CEOs, said in a statement. “It has become increasingly difficult for us to continue operating normally under these circumstances.”

They also noted that speculation in the marketplace about the company’s cash issues in recent weeks became “self-fulfilling prophesies.” They said that many suppliers cut off access to services and supplies. They also noted that landlords stopped remitting “contractually owed payments for construction and store opening work” it performed.

“As a result of all of this, our loans have gone into default, and we have had no alternative but to file Chapter 11 to enable continued operations.”

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