Decision pending on Boater’s World assets

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Ritz Camera Centers has selected a proposed bid for the sale of its Boater’s World retail stores.

During a court-approved auction Tuesday, the preferred bid was submitted by a joint venture formed by Gordon Brothers Retail Partners LLC and Hilco Merchant Resources LLC.

As part of the proposed agreement, Ritz Camera Centers, Gordon Brothers and Hilco plan to conduct store-closing sales for the Boater’s World assets. This consists of 129 retail store locations and one catalog showroom.

Under the terms of the Baseline Bid Agreement, which is the starting point for a bankruptcy auction, prospective bidders agree to pay the debtor at least 30.1 percent of the aggregate retail value of the merchandise included in the sale. In exchange, the debtor will pay a breakup fee of $495,000. The successful bidder, Gordon Brothers and Hilco, agreed to pay Boater's World 38 percent of the retail value of the merchandise included in the sale.

All of this is subject to court approval. A hearing on the bid is scheduled for this afternoon in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware.

Ritz Camera Centers, the parent company of Boater’s World, filed for bankruptcy protection last month. In court filings, Ritz says selling the business and/or assets of its Boater’s World Marine Centers is necessary to maintain Ritz’s “long-term viability and successful reorganization.”

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