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Coldwater Creek files for bankruptcy protection

FILE - In this Oct. 6 2009 file phoshopper walks past Coldwater Creek store downtown Seattle. The women's clothing retailer

FILE - In this Oct. 6, 2009 file photo, a shopper walks past a Coldwater Creek store in downtown Seattle. The women's clothing retailer has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after failing to find a potential buyer or a source of capital to help fund its turnaround efforts. The company said Friday April 11, 2014 that it expects to start sales to liquidate inventory in early May. It plans to hold going out of business sales in the coming months. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

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SANDPOINT, Idaho — The women’s clothing retailer Coldwater Creek has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after failing to find a potential buyer or a source of capital to help fund its turnaround efforts.

Coldwater Creek said Friday that its stores and its website are still open and selling clothing and other goods to shoppers.

But it expects to start sales to liquidate its inventory in early May. It plans to hold going out of business sales in the coming months.

The chain said it spent the past six months evaluating its options, but that its declining financial resources, tough retail conditions and its inability to find other viable options drove it to file for bankruptcy protection.

Coldwater Creek has struggled in recent years due to weak consumer spending and a failure to find fashions that resonated with customers. It hadn’t posted a quarterly profit since the second quarter of 2010.

The Sandpoint, Idaho-based company had cut costs and closed some stores during its attempts to keep the business afloat. It also made other moves to improve its profitability, but declines in sales trends continued to intensify.

The retailer said that it reached an agreement with its lenders on a liquidation plan and also reached a deal with inventory liquidators Gordon Brothers Retail Partners LLC and Hilco Merchant Resources LLC to manage its inventory clearance sales. Coldwater Creek said that the liquidation plan doesn’t contemplate any recovery for its shareholders. The liquidation plan still needs approval from the bankruptcy court.

Coldwater Creek Inc. is getting $75 million in debtor-in-possession financing from existing lender Wells Fargo to help it wind down its business. The company made its bankruptcy filing in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Del.



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