A&P files for bankruptcy

December 13, 2010 10:55AM

The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company, the Montvale, N.J.-based grocery giant with nearly 400 supermarkets in its portfolio, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in White Plains, N.Y. with $3.2 billion in debt, Bloomberg News reported. The A&P’s $2.5 billion in assets include stores under the Food Emporium, Waldbaum’s and Pathmark brands, which have suffered as wholesale clubs and drugstores have gained in popularity. The filing comes after the 101-year-old company announced plans over the summer to shutter 25 stores in five states, which it had hoped would help it meet its liquidity needs. The A&P has also been rumored to be selling off the Food Emporium portfolio. According to the Post, the bankruptcy filing could open the doors for a takeover by billionaire Ron Burkle, who recently picked up a significant portion of the company’s more than $250 million in secured debt obligations. [Bloomberg] and [Post]