Brookstone Nears Deal with Spencer Spirit Holdings

BrookstoneMERRIMACK, N.H.-Brookstone said it is working toward an agreement to be acquired by Spencer Spirit Holdings, a company that operates novelty and gift stores.

As part of the deal, according to a company statement, the retailer is thinking of filing a prenegotiated Chapter 11 bankruptcy with the United States Bankruptcy Court to facilitate the sale. The statement added that Brookstone’s day-to-day operations will continue uninterrupted during the discussions.

Brookstone currently operates about 240 mall and airport locations, along with a catalog, a website and a wholesale business. The statement said these parts of its business will continue to operate under the Brookstone brand, and that current employees will remain at their respective locations. In its most recent financial release, which came out last Nov. 5, Brookstone posted a net loss of $46.1 million for the first nine months of its fiscal year, compared to a net loss of $41.5 million for the first nine months of the prior fiscal year.

Jim Speltz, Brookstone’s president and CEO, said, “While we have implemented various successful cost-cutting initiatives, the search for a strong strategic partner who shares our vision and passion was a natural progression. We think we have found that in Spencer Spirit, and are excited about the opportunity to begin leveraging the resources of the two companies and popularity of the Spencer, Spirit and Brookstone brands.”

Spencer Spirit operates the Spencer Gifts specialty chain, which now numbers 644 stores in 49 states.