Tops Markets Files for Chapter 11
- by Robert Schaulis
WILLIAMSVILLE, NY – Citing the need to restructure “a substantial portion of debt,” Tops Markets has officially announced that it is pursuing financial restructuring under Chapter 11. The company noted in a press release that Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection will offer a path to right the company’s debt-heavy balance sheet and position Tops for continued long-term success.
“Tops has built strong market share and our stores continue to distinguish themselves by offering quality products at affordable prices with superior customer service,” said Frank Curci, Chief Executive Officer, in a press release. “We believe the financing that we received from our noteholders is a vote of confidence in our business. Our operations are strong and we have an outstanding network of stores and a talented team to support them. We are now undertaking a financial restructuring, through which we expect to substantially reduce our debt and achieve long-term financial flexibility. This will enable us to invest further in our stores, create an even more exceptional shopping experience for our customers and compete more effectively in today’s highly competitive and evolving market.”
Tops' announcement follows a week of speculation on the subject of bankruptcy. The company noted that Tops' 169 stores throughout the Northeast will continue to serve customers with no impact to day-to-day operations, and the company expects operations to continue unhindered throughout the financial restructuring process.
“We are continuing to provide our customers the convenience, savings, and friendly service that they expect from us,” added Curci. “Our priorities, values, and commitments to our customers and our communities will not change. On behalf of everyone at Tops, we thank our customers for their continued support and look forward to ensuring that their every need is met. I also want to thank our 14,262 employees and associates for their continued hard work and dedication.”
The Company elected to file for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, and Tops noted, it is working cooperatively with holders of more than 65 percent of its Senior Secured Notes due 2022 and continuing constructive discussions with these debtors.
In a Wall Street Journal report on the filing, the news source noted that Tops accrued $2.5 billion in revenue in 2017—a net loss of $80 million. In total, the company has assets of roughly $977 million and approximately $1.2 billion in liabilities.
The company also noted, in its press release, that it has received a commitment for a $125 million debtor-in-possession (DIP) term loan financing facility from unnamed noteholders and a $140 million DIP asset-based revolving loan from Bank of America, both of which are expected to support the Tops’ continued operations during the court-supervised restructuring process. Tops noted that it intends to continue to support its business operations, to pay employee wages and benefits without interruption, and to pay vendors and suppliers in full.
Additional information is available at www.topsrestructuring.com.