Bi-Lo expects May bankruptcy exit

Posted by Josette Dunn on 3rd May 2010

US supermarket group Bi-Lo has indicated that it expects to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in May, after a South Carolina court approved its reorganisation plan.BI-Lo, which operates 207 supermarkets, filed for bankruptcy 13 months ago when it found itself unable to refinance maturing loans due to the credit crunch.

The group’s refinancing plan, which is sponsored by Lone Star Funds, includes a US$150m equity investment from the investment funds as well as a $200m committed term loan from Credit Suisse and a $150m revolving credit facility, provided by GE Capital.

“We are very pleased to have reached this major milestone in Bi-Lo’s history,” said Michael Byars, president and CEO.

“Bi-Lo will emerge from bankruptcy financially stronger, with less debt, and as a more competitive company in the marketplace,” he insisted.

Byars said that, going forward, the retailer’s strategy would be to focus on delivering the “lowest possible pricing” and “best overall value” alongside “friendly, helpful service”.

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