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Sycamore In Talks To Acquire Bon-Ton's Retail Assets

Private equity firm Sycamore Partners is considering an offer to relieve struggling retailer Bon-Ton Stores Inc. of its assets.



The department store retailer has an estimated 260 stores across the country, including furniture galleries and clearance centers, and has a market value of $15.7M. It is also laden with more than $1B in debt and has seen its shares decline by half their value this year, falling another 13% on Thursday, according to Bloomberg. But Sycamore is reportedly engaging in talks with Bon-Ton about a potential deal to take some of those assets off Bon-Ton's hands.

This would not be the first time Sycamore has come to the rescue of a retailer. The firm is known for investing in ailing companies and in June entered into an agreement to buy Staples Inc. for $6.9B. Sycamore also invested in Aeropostale Holdings and Nine West Holdings and is attempting to raise $4B in funding by January in order to invest in even more.

While Bon-Ton has been around for more than a century, like many other retailers across the U.S. it has been dealing with poor sales and declining foot traffic due to changing consumer behavior and a rise in e-commerce. Adding to the pressure, some of its vendors have been demanding cash on delivery or letters of credit, causing further depletion of Bon-Ton's liquidity.