Buyers will look to bid on the Buy Buy Baby brand on Wednesday amid the bankruptcy of its parent company, Bed Bath & Beyond.
Buy Buy Baby is considered by many analysts to be Bed Bath & Beyond’s most valuable asset. hence the decision to hold a separate auction for the brand of child products
But the future of Buy Buy Baby, especially its storefronts, remains an open question: CNBC reported Friday that at least one interested bidder has cooled off on the idea of maintaining a physical footprint for the brand, citing the potential cost of doing so.
“There is no profitable model where you only have 10 stores or 40 stores,” said a person familiar with the matter.
Buy Buy Baby had approximately 120 stores when Bed Bath & Beyond filed for bankruptcy.
Amid a slowing economy, big box stores are increasingly seen as the most likely retailers that can make brick-and-mortar stores work, said Neil Saunders, managing director of retail at consultancy GlobalData.
«It’s a question of competitiveness,» he said. «There’s no question that people still buy baby items in brick-and-mortar stores, but you can do it in a lot of places, and many of them are very reasonably priced and very convenient, even for parents,» she said.
Direct-to-consumer online registry Babylist has submitted an offer to acquire some of Buy Buy Baby’s assets, such as its domain name and trademark, CEO Natalie Gordon told CNBC.
“When we looked at the stores and the footprint of the Buy Buy Baby store, we really said, does this accelerate this strategy? … And the answer was actually no,” she said. Babylist had previously told CNBC that it had $290 million in revenue in 2022 and is profitable.
Bed Bath & Beyond filed for bankruptcy protection in April, stating in filings that it had debts of more than $5 billion. The filing came despite multiple attempts to revive the declining brand, including a short-lived intervention last year by current GameStop CEO Ryan Cohen.
The company closed several locations as part of its early efforts to cut costs.
Cohen’s interest in the company briefly put Bed Bath & Beyond stock in the realm of meme stocks, a retail investor-driven phenomenon in which struggling companies garner interest from day traders betting on a revival. long-term. Although now worth less than $1, its shares are up about 19% in the last 30 days on reports that the company is successfully paying off some debt.
Last week, a bankruptcy judge approved a $21.5 million purchase offer from Overstock.com for Bed Bath & Beyond’s brand, intellectual property and e-commerce assets.