Limited Stores Is Said to Plan for Bankruptcy and Possible Liquidation

A Limited store is shown in Brooklyn, New York.

Photographer: JB Reed/Bloomberg

Limited Stores is planning to file for bankruptcy within weeks and most likely liquidate its business, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

The struggling retailer has retained Kirkland & Ellis as its legal adviser, said the people, who asked not to be named because the hire is private. Guggenheim Securities and RAS Management Advisors have been hired to help with a debt restructuring and any asset sale, the people said.

Limited Stores, once part of L Brands Inc., was spun off in 2007 in a leveraged buyout by private-equity firm Sun Capital Partners Inc. The chain has struggled like other mall-based retailers as consumers shift spending to experience rather than clothing. Online merchants also took away a big chunk of their market share.

The company will continue to try to sell its assets after a possible bankruptcy filing to emerge as a going concern, one of the people said.

Limited Brands and Sun Capital declined to comment. Representatives for Kirkland, Guggenheim and RAS didn’t immediately respond to requests seeking comment.

The possible liquidation comes as top executives depart the company. John Buell, who had become Limited’s interim chief executive officer in October, departed this month to become chief financial officer at apparel retailer Altar’d State. Diane Ellis, his predecessor as Limited’s CEO, left the company in early November.

The Wall Street Journal earlier reported the hiring of Guggenheim to assist in asset sales.

— With assistance by Steven Church

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