As the deadline for the initial offers for Sears’ home services business and other assets nears, unnamed sources claim that Centerbridge Partners LP and Ace Hardware Corp may bid on the division. Bidders have until Wednesday (December 5) to make their initial offers, Reuters reported.
While the sources told the outlet that an offer isn’t guaranteed, the group has reportedly considered a potential bid over a period of weeks. However, the sources did not say how much a potential offer would be from the investment firm and the retailer. A spokesperson for the investment firm would not comment to the outlet, while a representative from Ace would not immediately reply to the outlet’s query.
Sears is also reportedly looking at bids on the part of liquidators as well as offers for different parts of its business, per a letter from the retailer’s bankers in November. And, while Reuters reported that the retailer’s preference is to have most assets sold together, it could sell parts to separate buyers. That would mean “further breaking apart what was once the world’s largest retailer,” according to the outlet.
The news comes days after Bloomberg reported that a hedge fund that Sears Chairman Eddie Lampert operates along with Cyrus Capital Partners was at work on a possible takeover bid per unidentified sources. According to the report, “the prospective suitors may offer to swap debt that they hold for ownership of the stores in a so-called credit bid.” At the same time, the report noted that a takeover would have to be approved by a bankruptcy court and that other suitors could still make bids.
Earlier in November, the retailer was reportedly working finishing touches on a deal for $350 million in financing with Great American Capital Partners, along with other lenders. Such an arrangement could bring the retailers’ financing package up to $650 million, with $300 million in loans pledged by bank lenders, Reuters reported at the time.