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Fingerhut Catalog’s Parent Company Files for Bankruptcy

The direct-to-consumer retail company filed for bankruptcy after weaker-than-expected sales performance and debt in excess of $460 million.

Fingerhut Catalog’s Parent Company Files for Bankruptcy

Bluestem Brands, owner of the Fingerhut Catalog, filed for bankruptcy on Monday. The Eden Prairie-based company sold appliances, clothing, and a smattering of other products through its Fingerhut catalogs.

The bankruptcy was prompted by slow sales in the 2019 holiday season, along with $460.2 million in debt, the company said in a court filing.

“Unfortunately, like virtually every other retail and apparel-focused company, Bluestem has suffered from adverse macro-trends and certain operational shortfalls, including increased competition from retailers like Walmart and Amazon and weaker-than-expected sales during the 2019 holiday season,” the company said.

The company aims to sell its businesses to Cerberus Business Finance, which will also provide a $125 million bankruptcy loan. Other parties interested in Bluestem Brands will have an opportunity to submit better offers through the court-supervised competitive bidding process.

In the meanwhile, Bluestem intends to continue serving customers as usual. The company is currently seeking court approval to honor all customer programs like credit cards and gift cards, continue employee wages and benefits without interruptions, and pay for goods and services provided to the company during the process.

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