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Bellevue's Eddie Bauer files for bankruptcy | Recession blamed for slumping sales

Shoppers visit the Bellevue Square location as Bellevue-based clothing retailer Eddie Bauer filed for bankruptcy on Wednesday. - Chad Coleman/Bellevue Reporter
Shoppers visit the Bellevue Square location as Bellevue-based clothing retailer Eddie Bauer filed for bankruptcy on Wednesday.
— image credit: Chad Coleman/Bellevue Reporter

Bellevue-based Eddie Bauer has filed for bankruptcy protection.

In a filing Wednesday, the company said venders that supply its inventory were becoming uncertain because of the company's financial position. Eddie Bauer is headquartered in downtown Bellevue at a 28-story tower at Lincoln Square.

According to a wire service story, CCMP Capital Advisors LLC has bid for Eddie Bauer's assets. Other buyers may also make bids while the company is under court protection, the report said.

In its bankruptcy filing, Eddie Bauer said it might not have have the cash under its line of credit to make vendor payments in the future.

The company reportedly considered refinancing of all or some of its debt. It also considered a reorganization, sale or liquidation through Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, as well as continued operation on a modified business plan. It now hopes to be sold.

The company reportedly had $476.1 million in assets and $426.7 million in debt at the time of the filing Wednesday with the United States Bankruptcy Court of the District of Delaware.

Eddie Bauer has struggled with slumping sales as the nation's recession continues. It reported a loss for the first quarter of $44.5 million.

The retailer leases 200,000 square feet of space in Lincoln Square, about 40 percent of the the 540,000-square-foot tower. Microsoft leases the remaining space.

The company relocated its headquarters to downtown Bellevue from land it owned in the Overlake area of Redmond.

In June 2005, Eddie Bauer emerged as an independent entity from the Chapter 11 bankruptcy of parent Spiegel Inc. of Downers Grove, Ill.

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